Did Foucault enable Karl Rove?

So sez the Huffington Post:

In his 1970 book, The Order of Things, the French philosopher Michel Foucault proclaimed that the concept of man “is an invention of recent date” and would soon disappear, “like a face drawn in sand at the edge of the sea.” Foucault and other postmodernists argued that the individual self (or subject) is an ideological construct, and that there is no “truth” aside from discursive myths society perpetuates and constructs through language and thought. Karl Rove, with his recent history lesson on the Charlie Rose show, has posited a similar set of ideas. For Rove, like Foucault, there is no such thing as objective “truth,” only assertions mediated through an ever-shifting discourse where the past and the future matter little and are infinitely malleable.

The column goes on to attack Rove for his comments, but the set-up is one you would expect to find on a neocon blog, not a liberal one.

The gap occurs when you go from “truth is not universal” (Foucault) to “truth is just a myth and all truths are equal” (not-Foucault) as in the above paragraph.

2 Responses

  1. And, of course, OT was published in 1966. It was published in English translation in 1970.

  2. HuffPo is hardly “liberal.” It would be more accurate to call it New Age or something like that. Ironic, since the HuffPo is the self-creating simulacra of “postmodernism” the way it’s usually defined by the culture warriors of the right. In any case, a number of people have remarked over the course of the Bush administration that the right was adopting the vulgar relativism it used excoriate in the left.

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