Re: Fromm and Foucault

The other day I was reading pyschologist Erich Fromm (who I haven't read
much) and was struck by the similarities of his tone with Foucault. The
following quote is indicative of the tone:

"Our economic system must create men who fit its needs; men who cooperate
smoothly; men who want to consume more and more. Our system must create men
whose tastes are standardized, men who can be easily influenced, men whose
needs can be anticipated. Our system needs men who feel free and
independent but who are nevertheless willing to do what is expected of them,
men who will fit into the social machine without friction, who can be guided
without force, who can be led without leaders, and who can be directed
without any aim except the one to 'make good.' It is not that authority has
disappeared, nor even that it has lost in strength, but that it has been
transformed from the overt authority of force to the anonymous authority of
persuasion and suggestion. In other words to be adaptable, modern man is
obliged to nourish the illusion that everything is done with his consent,
even though such consent be extracted from him by subtle manipulation. His
consent is obtained, as it were, behind his back, or behind his consciousness."

Does anybody have any references or thoughts about Foucault/Fromm?


Partial thread listing: