archaeology was Bad Writing?


I'll put my translation of foucault's sentence in again so I can look at

Archaeology does not try to rediscover the continuous and imperceptible
transition which seamlessly links discourses to those that went before,
surround or follow them. It does not wait for the moment when discourses
became what they are, going from what they were not yet, neither for the
moment when they little by little lose their identity as the solidity of
their form dissolves.

> Even so, like you, I find it difficult to quite grasp Foucault's
>point here, and it seems to contradict what he has said earlier in the
>book. Surely archaeology does try to expose precisely those sorts of
>(otherwise) seamless links and transitions?

I think someone earlier made a point about this being an attack on
hegelian styles of historiography.

I think Foucault here is actually criticising the notion that there are
in fact seamless transitions between things which can be described by
using traditional history of ideas notions such as influence, cause and
effect, progress and increasing rationalisation. He is saying that the
aim of archaeology is not try to 'explain away' transitions or the
separate existence of different discourses. Instead it is a matter of
saying here is a discrete object - let's analyse it on its own terms
instead of trying to blend it in with the surroundings in some attempt
to provide an account of historical progress.

>Since one person dismissed my original query by saying that the
>was "perfectly lucid", are we perhaps missing something?

I have to say that I didn't find the Sheridan translation particularly


Clare O'Farrell
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