What is Capitalist Power? Reflections on Truth and Juridical Forms.

Toscano, Alberto. 2015. What is Capitalist Power? Reflections on Truth and Juridical Forms. In: Martina Tazzioli; Sophie Fuggle and Yari Lanci, eds. Foucault and the History of Our Present. London: Palgrave Macmillan, pp. 26-42. ISBN 978-1-349-48142-2 [Book Section]

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Pinning down Foucault’s relationship to Marx and Marxism is a manifestly maddening enterprise. The French philosopher’s vaunted hostility to all forms of ‘affiliation’ (Foucault, 2012: 101) was particularly intense when it came to what Sartre — an early philosophical nemesis and later ally in activism — deemed the untranscendable horizon of our times. The many interviews where Foucault was coaxed into confronting this matter head-on are replete with feints, ironies and provocations, suffused with a profound hostility towards the demand that he position himself, practically and theoretically, vis-à-vis the long-dominant form of oppositional social thought (Foucault, 1991a, 1996, 2000a, 2000b, 2012a). As with postwar intellectuals in general, but perhaps even more intensely, this relationship was nothing if not over-determined: by the overbearing presence of the French Communist Party (of which Foucault had been a member between 1950 and 1953); by Foucault’s judgments about Eastern Bloc policies; by intellectual rivalries and alliances (with Althusser, Sartre and Deleuze, the nouveaux philosophes); and by the shifting articulations between philosophy and political intervention, with Foucault, for instance, pushing to radicalize Maoist conceptions of popular justice in the early ‘70s (Foucault, 1980), while resonating with the growing anti-communist consensus in the second half of the decade (Christofferson, 2004; Dews, 1979).

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21 Nov 2017 11:54

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21 Nov 2017 11:54



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