On the Use and Abuse of Foucault for Politics

On the Use and Abuse of Foucault for Politics

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On the Use and Abuse of Foucault for Politics provides an accessible interpretation of Foucault's political philosophy, demonstrating how Foucault is relevant for contemporary democratic theory. Brent Pickett lays out an overview of Foucault's politics, including a comprehensive overview of the reasons for various conflicting interpretations, and then explores how well the different 'Foucaults' can be used in progressive politics and democratic theory.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 144 pages
  • 149.9 x 223.5 x 12.7mm | 136.08g
  • Lanham, MD, United States
  • English
  • 0739114611
  • 9780739114612
  • 1,833,990

Table of contents

Chapter 1 Introduction Chapter 2 Power Chapter 3 Resistance Chapter 4 Foucault's Masks and Contested Interpretations Chapter 5 Foucaultian Rights? Chapter 6 Towards a Democracy of Power
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Review quote

Pickett clearly maps the contemporary debate on Foucault at the same time as offering an innovative contribution to that debate. The book will be of interest to readers who are being introduced to Foucault for the first times as well as scholars in the field looking for provocative new insights into Foucault and his work. -- Simone Chambers Recommended. CHOICE Thought provoking. Political Studies Review In this highly readable and well informed essay Brent Pickett demonstrates that Foucault's work, however empirically or historically insightful, cannot sustain a coherent theoretical perspective on political reality or action by itself. There is a disjunction between Foucault's analysis of power and institutions and the normative orientations that so clearly animate his work. Contemporary political theorists attempting to appropriate and build upon Foucault's insights have almost invariably interpreted him as an individualistic anarchist, while Professor Pickett effectively argues that a more theoretically coherent interpretation would incorporate these insights into a radical theory of social democracy. He fully realizes, however, that there is textual support for either interpretive strategy, that one of them must be chosen, and that Foucault himself does not provide sufficient guidance for one or the other of these options. This book is clearly among the best I have read on Foucault, and from the perspective of a political theorist it is certainly the most useful. -- Edward B. Portis, Texas A&M University
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About Brent L. Pickett

Brent Pickett is Associate Professor of Political Science at Chadron State College.
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