Foucault News

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

Foucault, Michel. “Literature and Madness: Madness in the Baroque Theatre and the Theatre of Artaud.” Theory, Culture & Society, (October 2021). https://doi.org/10.1177/02632764211032717.

Abstract
Literature and madness dominate Michel Foucault’s early writings in the 1960s, and indeed much of his career. In this text, Foucault considers the relation between madness, language, and silence; the difficult frontier between language and literary convention; and the experience of madness within language. He moves from a meditation on madness, to a rare commentary on theatre, stagecraft, and Artaud, and finishes by considering literature’s capacity for rupture. ‘Literature and Madness’ is a translation of a text written by Foucault in the 1960s, and recently published in Folie, langage, littérature, ed. Henri-Paul Fruchaud, Daniele Lorenzini and Judith Revel (Paris: Vrin, 2019, 89–109). This version includes a translator’s introduction by Nancy Luxon and was given a distinct subtitle to distinguish it from a similar lecture with the same title in that volume.

Keywords
Artaud, Foucault, literature, madness, theatre

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