Foucault News

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


Duke University Press, 2021

In an interview conducted a month or so before his death, Foucault took up the notion of problématisation that had structured The Use of Pleasure. This time the context is not Foucault’s scholarly attention to “the conditions in which human beings ‘problematize’ what they are, what they do, and the world in which they live” (Use of Pleasure, tr. Robert Hurley, Vintage, 1990, 10), but the person of Foucault himself. He had been discussing his refusal to engage in polemics, and he tells Paul Rabinow (in words that ring with utopian fervor today), that his disdain for polemic is related to his way of “approaching political questions”:

It is true that my attitude isn’t a result of the form of critique that claims to be a methodical examination in order to reject all possible solutions except for the one valid one. It is…

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