Foucault News

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

Dyakov, A.V.
Michel Foucault and Antiquity: Between the philosophical historicism and the history of thought
(2022) Vestnik Sankt-Peterburgskogo Universiteta, Filosofiia i Konfliktologiia, 38 (1), pp. 19-29.

DOI: 10.21638/spbu17.2022.102
Article in Russian
Michel Foucault was well known as an epistemologist, historicist, and historian of thought. His analyses of ancient culture are a crucial moment for his doctrine of the becoming of the subject. The Foucaultian version of the ancient legacy in modern and contemporary Western culture shows clearly its aspects in the opposition of Pierre Hadot’s doctrine. If Hadot accents the mystic mode of subjectivation, Foucault tends to the modes of dandyism and the esthetics of existence. At the same time, both of them belong to the same tradition in the history of the Western intellectual culture that traces the meaning of the human being in the perfectibility and concern of self. This article detects the roots of Foucaultian historicist position and origins of his conceptualization of the care of the self. The Foucaultian conceptualization mixes platonic concerns of the government of self, Nietzschean critics of Kantianism, and the Heideggerian approach to the philosophy of history, the sum of which in this case is radical historicism. As a result, Foucault proposes a contemporary version of the ancient practice of self and asserts the understanding of philosophy of the self. The author’s theses is that the focus of Foucauldian philosophy is the care of self as the basic mode of subjectivation in the political and ethical realms of the Western culture © 2022 Saint Petersburg State University. All rights reserved.

Author Keywords
care of self; esthetics of existence; historicism; Michel Foucault; parresia; Pierre Hadot; subject; subjectivation

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