Re: [Foucault-L] Aesthetics and Power


I think that in a foucaldian perspective, aesthetics has certainly nothing
to do with metaphysical or cognitive problems. It can not have something to
do with "sense impressions" or the question of consciouseness or how the
world is created. When Foucault talks about "aesthetics", he generally
designates something like artistic creation, the problem of "style"...

In this way, in "Le courage de la vérité" (his last courses at the Collège
de France, 1984), there is an interesting lecture about the "aesthetics of
existence" (esthétiques de l'existence) in opposition with the "methaphysics
of the soul" (métaphysique de l'âme), when he compares Plato's Alcibiade and
Lachès. Explaining that these two points of view were deeply footed in the
history of occidental thinking, but that the second (metaphysics of the
soul) would became dominant in our modernity. But with the cynical impulse
and its transformations, the aesthetics of life would remain silently, in
other forms.

In the same lectures, Fouc. also emphasize the importance of some kind of
scandalous esthetics of the the cynical life as part of the truth-telling
conditions. This tuth-telling being linked with "true life" ("la vraie vie",
not to be confused with "real life") and referred to the problem of the
"other world" (autre monde), the question of militantism. In this way, he
also gives an interesting interpretation of modern art, and its subversive
function, as some kind of possible anti-platonist and anti-aristotelist
cynical vestige that can be found in the subversive function of art, for

2010/6/17 Chetan Vemuri <aryavartacnsrn@xxxxxxxxx>

> He wrote alot in the 60's regarding the relations between artworks and
> power relations/epistemology. His writings on painting and literature
> somewhat fall under this category. He also was in the midst of writing
> a substantial book on the connection between painting and politics
> with regards to the work of Manet. It was never finished but a few
> Tunisian lectures roughly sketching the work of that book have been
> published in a new little volume : "Manet and the Object of Painting"
> or some such thing. It doesn't get to the crux of what Foucault wanted
> to do with Manet but its a start.
> On Wed, Jun 16, 2010 at 6:03 PM, Teresa Mayne <teresa.mayne@xxxxxxxxx>
> wrote:
> > Thank you!
> >
> > On Wed, Jun 16, 2010 at 4:27 PM, Douglas Olena <doug@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> >
> >> Try the arts of self construction found in "The Politics of Truth",
> >> especially in 'What is Enlightenment?' The concept of transgression is
> >> important and writing as self construction. Try the end of the
> >> Rousseau article. Look at self construction as an aesthetic project.
> >>
> >> Sent from my iPhone
> >>
> >> On Jun 16, 2010, at 2:52 PM, Teresa Mayne <teresa.mayne@xxxxxxxxx>
> >> wrote:
> >>
> >> > Hello again. It's been a while, but I was wondering if anyone knows
> >> > if
> >> > Foucault wrote anything on the relation between aesthics and power?
> >> > I am
> >> > writing a review on 'The Political Life of Sensation' by Panagia and
> >> > it
> >> > would be a great help if I could add some more depth to my theory with
> >> > 'sweet pea's' help. I understand aesthetics to be a broader
> >> > conceptual
> >> > apparatus, that depending on the relation to which, we construct our
> >> > relationship towards the world through consciousness's
> >> > interpretation of
> >> > it (i.e. representation). So, the work doesn't have to necessarily
> >> > revolve
> >> > around the traditional conception of art, but if we could find
> >> > something
> >> > that plays with it a bit would be absolutely brilliant.
> >> >
> >> > Thanks,
> >> >
> >> > Teresa
> >> > _______________________________________________
> >> > Foucault-L mailing list
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> >> Foucault-L mailing list
> >>
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> > Foucault-L mailing list
> >
> --
> Chetan Vemuri
> West Des Moines, IA
> aryavartacnsrn@xxxxxxxxx
> (319)-512-9318
> "You say you want a Revolution! Well you know, we all want to change the
> world"
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  • Re: [Foucault-L] Aesthetics and Power
    • From: Teresa Mayne
  • Replies
    [Foucault-L] Aesthetics and Power, Teresa Mayne
    Re: [Foucault-L] Aesthetics and Power, Douglas Olena
    Re: [Foucault-L] Aesthetics and Power, Teresa Mayne
    Re: [Foucault-L] Aesthetics and Power, Chetan Vemuri
    Partial thread listing: