By Timothy O'Leary
The paintings of Michel Foucault has been tremendous influential in fields as different as philosophy, historical past, cultural reports, sociology and sexuality reviews. In his later paintings, Foucault became to the query of ethics. operating again via heritage, throughout the Christian interrogation of wish to the origins of the self within the texts of classical Greece, Foucault tried to conceive of ethics as an artwork of the self, as an aesthetics of life and as a tradition of liberty.
Foucault and the artwork of Ethics argues that Foucault's exploration of the historical past of sexuality and his reinterpretation of the severe philosophical culture mix to border a brand new method either to the way in which we comprehend the projects of philosophy and to the best way we are living our lives.
The publication is vital examining for all these operating on the intersection of latest debates in philosophy, ethics, politics and cultural studies.
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Additional resources for Foucault: The Art of Ethics (Continuum Studies in Ethics)
As Foucault underlines in the 'Introduction' to the collection, Herculine lived in an exclusively female world, one in which the other sex was never present with its demand that one be on one side or the other of a sexual divide. In fact Herculine was very happy, in this monosexual environment, to be 'other' without being of the 'other sex'. It is because she was both the same as her fellows and strangely different that, in Foucault's surmise, Herculine was a source of fascination and attraction to the women who surrounded her: Neither a woman loving women, nor a man hidden among women.
Drawing on this discussion of Foucault's attitude towards the hermeneutics of the self, and on our reading of The History of Sexuality, volume I, it is now possible to deal with the question of the motivation behind Foucault's account of ancient ethics. 1 where he speaks of the fundamental change his project underwent in the years between the publication of volume I in 1976 and the publication of volumes II and III in 1984. The two key elements of this explanation are, firstly, the account it gives of the three axes of 'experience' (UP, 4) and, secondly, the way that it redefines the history of sexuality project as a history of the ethical 'problematization' of sexual conduct through an investigation of the history of 'techniques of the self (UP, 11).
Thus, the anecdote can be taken as an illustration of the 'bizarre' relations which have developed in Western culture between 'individuality, discourse, truth and coercion' (BHS, 201). Or, to be more precise, it leads one to ask what relation between truth and subjectivity could give rise to such a 'strange and yet widespread practice' (SS, 8). 29 And what his initial work in this field showed him was the importance of investigating the precise ways Western societies have linked subjectivity and truth together 'with the tightest bond'.