Thanks for doing what I was about to do.

As I said a couple of weeks back, I've recently read Le pouvoir
psychiatrique, and when I get a bit of time, was hoping to send some
comments to the list.

The cannibalism case is interesting in terms of the reading Foucault gives
it in Les Anormaux, particularly as in this recent case they seem to be
searching for a sexual angle. The cases Foucault gives in Les Anormaux - the
soldier Bertrand and the Vampire of Dusseldorf (see pages 94-5, and 267-71,
for example) - and many others, trade on this relation between monstrosity
and sexuality, or more particularly sexual deviance. Bertrand was also
implicated in necrophilia; Foucault also mentions Jack the Ripper.

There is also the discussion of cannibalism in relation to Marie Antoinette
in Les Anormaux. She and Louis XVI are portrayed as monsters, and Foucault
discusses literature at the time which talks about them in terms of
cannibalism, debauchery, homosexuality and incest. However, some of
monarchist literature after the execution of the couple portrayed the
regicide as a form of cannibalism. Foucault also looks at these
transgressive activities in literature, notably de Sade.

Those of you awaiting the English translation have much to look forward to!

A couple of, I think, interesting quotes on this theme.

This from Boria Sax's fascinating book _Animals in the Third Reich: Pets,
Scapegoats, and the Holocaust_, London: Continuum, 2000, p. 162.

"the taboo against cannibalism, together with that against incest, is one of
the most fundamental ways in which humanity sets itself apart from other

And in a book that Sax's led me to, a number of examples of animals
prosecuted for acting as humans, including this one for effective

"In 1266, at Fontenay-aux-Roses, near Paris, a pig convicted of having eaten
a child was publicly burned by order of the monks of Saint Genevieve. In
1386, the tribunal of Falaise sentenced a sow to be mangled and maimed in
the head and forelegs, and then to be hanged, for having torn the face and
arms of a child and thus caused its death. Here we have a strict application
of the lex talionis, the primitive retributive principle for taking an eye
for an eye and a tooth for a tooth".

E. P. Evans, The Criminal Prosecution and Capital Punishment of Animals,
London: William Heinemann, 1906, p. 140.

Thanks again Denoix


> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-foucault@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> [mailto:owner-foucault@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx]On Behalf Of denoix
> Sent: 05 December 2003 18:13
> To: foucault@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: Re:
> It has been some time since this list was so active. Maybe we should thank
> wendy ...
> Any reflections on the cannibalistic case in Germany Armin Meiwis?
> i'm reading le pouvoir psychiatrique for the moment? In les anormaux there
> were some splendid reflections on cannibalism in early psychiatry?
> d

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