A face in the sand: the subject in Foucault

Abstract

Based on a critique of Spivak to Foucault, the article discusses the question of the subject in Foucault’s work showing its connection to the structuralist perspective aimed to overcome the primacy of the individual self in the human sciences using unconscious structures as the foundation of explanation. It is argued that this perspective not “anthropocentric” remains present in the work of the author in the Discipline and punish period and The history of sexuality, vol. 1: An introduction and, finally, it is proposed that the changes in Foucault’s approach in the early 1980s resulted from an attempt to escape impasses that refusing the prospect of sovereign and self-conscious subject would caused.

Foucault; Subject; Intellectual trajectory

Departamento de Sociologia da Faculdade de Filosofia, Letras e Ciências Humanas da Universidade de São Paulo Av. Prof. Luciano Gualberto, 315, 05508-010, São Paulo - SP, Brasil - São Paulo - SP - Brazil
E-mail: temposoc@edu.usp.br