François Cusset: French Theory: How Foucault, Derrida, Deleuze, & Co. Transformed the Intellectual Life of the United States (2003–) [FR, EN]
Filed under book | Tags: · deconstruction, feminism, france, history, history of philosophy, literary theory, marxism, philosophy, politics, postmodern, poststructuralism, structuralism, theory, united states
“During the last three decades of the twentieth century, a disparate group of radical French thinkers achieved an improbable level of influence and fame in the United States. Compared by at least one journalist to the British rock ‘n’ roll invasion, the arrival of works by Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, Jean-François Lyotard, Jean Baudrillard, Gilles Deleuze, and Félix Guattari on American shores in the late 1970s and 1980s caused a sensation.
Outside the academy, “French theory” had a profound impact on the era’s emerging identity politics while also becoming, in the 1980s, the target of right-wing propagandists. At the same time in academic departments across the country, their poststructuralist form of radical suspicion transformed disciplines from literature to anthropology to architecture. By the 1990s, French theory was woven deeply into America’s cultural and intellectual fabric.
French Theory is the first comprehensive account of the American fortunes of these unlikely philosophical celebrities. François Cusset looks at why America proved to be such fertile ground for French theory, how such demanding writings could become so widely influential, and the peculiarly American readings of these works. Reveling in the gossipy history, Cusset also provides a lively exploration of the many provocative critical practices inspired by French theory. Ultimately, he dares to shine a bright light on the exultation of these thinkers to assess the relevance of critical theory to social and political activism today—showing, finally, how French theory has become inextricably bound with American life.”
Publisher La Découverte, Paris, 2003
Translated by Jeff Fort, With Josephine Berganza and Marlon Jones
Publisher University of Minnesota Press, 2008
ISBN 0816647321, 9780816647323
French Theory: Foucault, Derrida, Deleuze & Cie et les mutations de la vie intellectuelle aux États-Unis. (French)
French Theory: How Foucault, Derrida, Deleuze, & Co. Transformed the Intellectual Life of the United States. (English)