Ethics and History: <i>Authentic vs. Effective History</i>

in Sartre, Foucault, and Historical Reason

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print February 2005 | ISBN: 9780226254708
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226254722 | DOI:
Ethics and History: Authentic vs. Effective History

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This chapter considers the consequences of Foucault's claim that reason itself is not one or even dual, as Sartre allowed, but multiple and subject to the vicissitudes of history. In other words, if there is reason to history, reason itself has a history, which Foucault has undertaken to graph. The chapter graphs Sartrean existentialism across the Foucauldian quadrilateral and triangle to determine how closely Sartre fits into the modern episteme—that is, to ascertain how deeply Sartre is lodged in the thought of the nineteenth century, as Foucault has charged. The chapter compares the work of the two authors on three specific issues: experience and the lived, violence and power, and parrhesia and authenticity. The chapter concludes this comparative phase by considering how these coordinates, spatializations, axes, and contrasting concepts issue in two distinct approaches to the intelligibility of history.

Keywords: Foucault; Sartre; history; episteme; existentialism; parrhesia; spatializations

Chapter.  9507 words. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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