I was really disappointed to read this article about Foucault:
"for psychiatry, and indeed the whole of medicine, to the rest of which
Foucault soon turned his undermining attention, were not enterprises to
liberate mankind from some of its travails—enterprises that inevitably
committed errors en route to knowledge and enlightenment—but
expressions of the will to power of the medical profession"
Pretty superficial interpretation of Foucault. But this theme carries
throughout the article:
"This will needed to be unmasked, so that mankind could liberate itself
and live in the anarchic Dionysian mode that Foucault favored. (A
sadomasochistic homosexual, the French philosopher later lived out his
fantasies in San Francisco, and died of AIDS as a result.)"
Wow! Can you believe that is the way Foucault's work is described? I
don't understand why the author thought it was necessary to moralize
Foucault's death as some type of consequence. Am I wrong to read a bit
of anger and defensiveness in this quote?
"Museums of Madness, nevertheless implied that the arrogation of
insanity to the purview of doctors in the eighteenth century did not
grow out of any natural connection between the phenomena of madness and
the endeavor of medicine—still less out of the practical ability of
doctors of the time to cure madness (witness their failure in the case
of George III)—but on the medical profession’s entrepreneurial drive to
increase its influence and income."
This quote is a very poor mischaracterization of Madness and
Civilization in my opinion.
Anyway, I could go on with this article. Am I wrong to think this
article misunderstands Foucault? I'd love to heard feedback.
Also, there is a comments link for this article. I think it would be
nice to read some comments to this article online.
Have a great weekend!