Re: [HAB:] Re: the social (foucault) and the lifeworld (habermas)

Hiro and Gary,

I think Gary's following comments are crucial.

primacy of action or activity over representation or
structure is crucial for understanding Habermas' sense of
the lifeworld.]

But if we take this understanding of lifeworld in Habermas then it is very
very near to Foucault's concept. For long time I have believed that there
are striking comparisions between Fouucault's concept of practice and
Habermas' conception of lifeworld (notwithstanding their differences).
However secondary literature (as far as I know) hardly mentions this
(reasons are not hard to come by-curse of polemics!).

I will recommend reading of Paul Veyne's , "Foucault Revolutionizes history"
Foucault and his interlocutors / edited and introduced by Arnold I.
Davidson. Chicago : University of Chicago Press, 1997. Veyne does not
mention Habermas but the way he describes Foucault's conception of pracitce
has striking similarities with Habermas' conception of lifeworld espeically
the version to be found in TCA11.

I am interested in pursuing this topic in the context of my thesis so am
looking forward to thoughts by others on the list.


----Original Message Follows----
From: Gary E Davis <gedavis1@xxxxxxxxx>
Reply-To: habermas@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
To: habermas@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [HAB:] Re: the social (foucault) and the lifeworld (habermas)
Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2003 18:26:11 -0700 (PDT)

One resource that might be helpful is the confrontation
between Habermasian Thomas McCarthy and Foucauldian David
Hoy as their co-authored book _Critical Theory_, Blackwell
c1992. McCarthy provides the Habermasian position on
various issues and criticizes Foucault. Hoy provides the
Fouldian position on issues and criticizes Habermas. Then
McCarthy responds to Hoy and Hoy to McCarthy.

Your characterization of the social appears to be a matter
of content rather than constitutive form. For Habermas, the
social *dimension* of the lifeworld exists with the
subjective and objective dimension of the lifeworld, and it
exists as the manifold dynamic of intersubjectivity, rather
than as sociality as "realm" or structural elements
comprising a notion of sociality itself. Sociality is a
derivative concept arising from real dynamics of
intersubjectivity, communicative dynamics especially. The
primacy of action or activity over representation or
structure is crucial for understanding Habermas' sense of
the lifeworld.

--- Hiro Saito <hirosophy@xxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> Could anyone provide me with explanations or sources
> (e.g., books, articles)
> concerning a conceptual relationship between Foucault's
> "the social" and
> Habermas's "the lifeworld"? For Foucault, the social
> is--very crudely
> put!--a realm of trans-individual structures, identities,
> culture, and
> social needs and risks, at which welfare policies are
> targeted. And this
> description of the social somehow makes me think that the
> social is,
> "translated" in the Habermasian terms, a space in the
> lifeworld (or the
> lifeworld itself?) in which encroachment by the
> state-administrative system
> is most clearly effected.
> Hmm, I'm confused. Probably I should find out more
> precisely what Foucault
> meant by "the social."
> Hiro
> MSN 8 with e-mail virus protection service: 2 months
> --- from list habermas@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx ---

--- from list habermas@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx ---

Express yourself with cool emoticons - download MSN Messenger today!

Partial thread listing: