Michel Foucault’s Madness and Civilisation: 50th anniversary

Amazing to think this is now 50 years old. Is it still relevant, and if so how?

Australian radio’s “Philosopher’s Zone” with Alan Saunders has a program dedicated to Folie et déraison Madness and Civilization (now translated in full as History of Madness). The guest is Justin Clemens, a Lacan scholar at the University of Melbourne.

3 Responses

  1. I thought it was published in 1961?
    Wouldn’t it be still 48?

  2. I’m pretty certain they are correct in saying the book was abridged until a few years ago, but I think his becoming a star happened after the “Order of Things” – in France anyway.

    It’s actually a good interview and a reasonable precise of M and C. What’s most interesting is that in the UK, this type of radio interview is nowhere to be heard. I’m more interested in MF’s Mental Illness and Psychology rather than his “Das Capital” of the societal pathology of madness; the formulation of an idea as culpable in its agency as that with which it purports to define. To paraphrase Baudrillard’s atttack. Having said that F’s work has stood the test of time in a sturdy manner that has eluded Derrida and Baudrillard. Maybe even Deleuze.

    One has only to spend a few hours in a hospital (mental or otherwise) to see Foucault’s correct dissection in all of its “reason”.

  3. The preface is dated 5th February, 1960. So I guess that’s the anniversary date. Drinks and desubjectivation at my place?

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