Thursday, August 19, 2010

Heyes, Cressida R. Review of C. G. Prado, ed. FOUCAULT'S LEGACY. NDPR (August 2010).

Prado, C. G., ed.  Foucault's Legacy.  London: Continuum, 2009.

The task of C. G. Prado's edited collection is to assess Foucault's legacy on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of his death. As the editor admits in the introduction, this is a vast task, circumscribed in the volume through eight articles that "examine [Foucault's] contributions to contemporary thought by entering into various different conversations with one of the most innovative, enigmatic, and challenging thinkers of our time" (3). This is a fairly generic description, and the articles are wide-ranging. Most are oriented around explicating Foucault's indebtedness to, and influence upon, various other philosophers -- Heidegger, Nietzsche, Hegel, Richard Rorty, Bernard Williams, Gianni Vattimo. As a result, we can read this volume as an analysis of Foucault's location in the ongoing history of ideas, as well as (in large part) an investigation of his relation to historicity and temporality and of his genealogical method. The essays progress more or less chronologically in terms of the interlocutors, from Nietzsche to Vattimo, bracketed by less directly figure-oriented essays on temporality and Foucault's relation to secularization and fascism. . . .

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