Foucault and Feminism: Power, Gender and the Self by Lois McNay

Published by Polity Press, 1992, Paperback.

Condition: Good. Lightly rubbed at the tips of the wrappers. Previous owners’ inscription to the first blank.

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First in this, paperback, edition. From the cover: This book offers a systematic attempt to explore the point of convergence between feminist theory and the work of Michel Foucault. McNay argues that feminism has something to gain from a careful reading of Foucaults work, and that, in turn, the concerns of feminist analysis can shed light on some of the limitations of Foucaults approach.

McNay provides a clear and concise account of the development of Foucaults work and then concentrates on his later writings, where he elaborates an original theory of the self. She shows how Foucaults work on the self can be used to counter certain tendencies in feminism, such as the tendency to treat women as passive victims of systems of oppression. However, McNay argues that there are also significant shortcomings in Foucaults writings, particularly with regard to normative and political questions. Re-examining Foucaults ambivalent relation to Enlightenment thought, she shows how this relation underlies some of the most significant ambiguities and unresolved tensions in his work.


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