Foucault and the Iranian Revolution: Gender and the Seductions of Islamism
by Janet Afary and Kevin B. Anderson
University of Chicago Press, 2005
Cloth: 978-0-226-00785-4 | eISBN: 978-0-226-00787-8 | Paper: 978-0-226-00786-1
Library of Congress Classification B2430.F724A63 2005
Dewey Decimal Classification 955.0542
Reference metadata exposed for Zotero via unAPI.
"[Foucault's] dispatches--now fully available in translation--shed some light on the illusions of intellectuals in our own time. . . .at a time when religion is resurgent in politics and Western liberals are divided between interventionists and anti-imperialists, Foucault's particular blend of blindness and insight about the Islamists remains instructive. The authors dissect the shortcuts and evasions that led Foucault into his distinctive stance."
"The whole of Foucault's Iranian journalism--a total of fifteen articles and interviews--was republished in France in 1994 as part of a four-volume anthology of his occasional writings. Ever since then, French critics have made the most of his 'error' over Islamism, and some of them sought to implicate him in the attacks on Washington and New York in 2001. In the English-speaking world, however, the Iranian writings have hitherto been ignored; but the anomaly is now being put right with some authority by Janet Afary and Kevin B. Anderson. In Foucault and the Iranian Revolution, they tell the full story of Foucault's sudden induction into the journalist's trade and his contacts with exiles in Paris and rebels in Iran, concluding with an appendix of 100 pages comprising translations of Foucault's articles, together with some of the reactions they provoked, copiously annotated and explained. One could hardly have asked for more."
"Afary and Anderson assign a deeper cause to Foucault's persistent misreading of the Khomeini revolution: His deep disdain for women. . . . Till now, most students of Foucault have treated the Maitre's yearnings as an odd, embarrassing, but ultimately trivial derogation from his great contributions to modern thought. Afary and Anderson have restored them to the place that Foucault himself believed they occupied: the very center."— David Frum, National Review Online