File spoon-archives/foucault.archive/foucault_2001/foucault.0111, message 7

Subject: RE: Foucault's popularity
Date: Sat, 03 Nov 2001 09:33:46 +0000

mais foucault n'est pas populaire

>From: "Hennon, Lisa" <>
>Subject: RE: Foucault's popularity
>Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2001 08:40:22 -0500
>Lionel, you ask great questions.  I enjoy how others have responded.  Here
>is what I think.  Foucault's popularity and notoriety has much to do with
>what his intellectual contribution enabled others to do.  I first read
>Foucault by stumbling across one of his books in the library.  I had never
>heard of him, nor did I know how to say his name; the title grabbed my
>attention--The Order of Things.  (At the time, I wanted somebody to please
>tell me how things are ordered.)
>Fortunately (or not) for me, his work was beginning to be translated into
>English, and one of my professors later explained that numerous European
>authors were not made available to American readers until the 1960s-70s.
>Foucault remains a "notorious" figure for many American university teachers
>because their colleagues picked up his work as a way to change the debates
>in higher education.  The conversation has moved away from Foucault's
>detractors, so they talk about the "loss" or "decline" or "grade inflation"
>or whatever other term that suggests how dangerous it is to read Foucault
>and the other "french guys".
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Lionel Boxer []
>Sent: Wednesday, October 31, 2001 5:30 PM
>Subject: Foucault's popularity
>Does anyone agree with this?  Does anyone disagree?
>Not to diminish Foucault's intellectucal contribution.
>Perhaps his popularity could be explained by his proactive and high profile
>social activism that contributed to his popularity.
>He provided theory and practice for resistance, but more important he led 
>example.  He was a total force in that regard; perhaps even a movement.
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