Archive for October, 2011

New Book Announcement – Michael Staub, Madness is Civilization

Michael Staub, Madness is Civilization. When the Diagnosis was Social 1948-1980. (University of Chicago Press 2011) For more please click here.

Are Americans particularly hyperactive?

The Opionion Pages of the New York Times have launched an interesting discussion entitled “Are Americans More Prone to A.D.H.D.?” Among the experts they asked for an answer is the author Ethan Watters, whose recent book Crazy like us h-madness editor Hans Pols has reviewed a year ago. Watters argues that

psychiatric historians suggest that every generation has a “symptom pool,” behaviors by which individuals can communicate their distress. (…) In certain historical moments, a given diagnosis will hit such a resonant cultural note that it catches fire. This, I believe, is the story of A.D.H.D.

Edward Hallowell (psychiatrist), Peter R. Breggin (psychiatrist), Donna Ford (professor of special education) and Melana Zyla Vickers (journalist) are four other “experts” the New York Times asked for answers.

New issue – History of the Human Sciences

hhsA new issue of History of the Human Sciences is available online. It is a special issue devoted to Michel Foucault and contains the following articles:

Foucault across the disciplines: introductory notes on contingency in critical inquiry (Colin Koopman)

Foucault is one of the most widely cited thinkers across social sciences and humanities disciplines today. Foucault’s appeal, and ongoing value, across the disciplines has much to do with the power of his thought and his method to help us see the contingency of practices we take to be inevitable. It is argued in this introductory article that Foucault’s emphasis on contingency is as misunderstood as it is influential. I distinguish two senses of contingency in Foucault. A first sense, widely acknowledged, concerns Foucault’s facility at showing that a taken-for-natural practice is in fact contingently produced. A second sense, widely neglected, concerns the facility of Foucauldian methods for grasping how a given practice was contingently produced. The second sense of contingency opens up possibilities for practical transformation that the former sense of contingency largely leaves to the side.

Déraison (Ian Hacking)

Michel Foucault’s famous book on madness first appeared in 1961 as Folie et Déraison. When it was reissued in 1972, ‘Déraison’ had dropped from the title, but it remained dense in the text, often capitalized or italicized. No two texts, abridgements, or translations of the madness book are identical with respect to the word. It is translated as ‘unreason’, but what does it mean? How did Foucault use it? Why did he come to downplay it? The relationships between déraison and painting and writing are explored. It is noted that the idea of ‘archaeology of knowledge’ is introduced in connection with a discussion of folie and déraison as displayed in Racine’s Andromaque.

In praise of counter-conduct (Arnold I. Davidson)

Without access to Michel Foucault’s courses, it was extremely difficult to understand his reorientation from an analysis of the strategies and tactics of power immanent in the modern discourse on sexuality (1976) to an analysis of the ancient forms and modalities of relation to oneself by which one constituted oneself as a moral subject of sexual conduct (1984). In short, Foucault’s passage from the political to the ethical dimension of sexuality seemed sudden and inexplicable. Moreover, it was clear from his published essays and interviews that this displacement of focus had consequences far beyond the specific domain of the history of sexuality. Security, Territory, Population (Foucault, 2007) contains a conceptual hinge, a key concept, that allows us to link together the political and ethical axes of Foucault’s thought. Indeed, it is Foucault’s analysis of the notions of conduct and counter-conduct in his lecture of 1 March 1978 that seems to me to constitute one of the richest and most brilliant moments in the entire course. It is astonishing, and of profound significance, that the autonomous sphere of conduct has been more or less invisible in the history of modern (as opposed to ancient) moral and political philosophy. This article argues that a new attention should be given to this notion, both in Foucault’s work and more generally.

Foucault and the politics of our selves (Amy Allen)

Exploring the apparent tension between Foucault’s analyses of technologies of domination – the ways in which the subject is constituted by power–knowledge relations – and of technologies of the self – the ways in which individuals constitute themselves through practices of freedom – this article endeavors to makes two points: first, the interpretive claim that Foucault’s own attempts to analyse both aspects of the politics of our selves are neither contradictory nor incoherent; and, second, the constructive claim that Foucault’s analysis of the politics of our selves, though not entirely satisfactory as it stands, provides important resources for the project of critical social theory.

Toward a left art of government: from ‘Foucauldian critique’ to Foucauldian politics (James Ferguson)

Many contemporary uses of Foucauldian modes of analysis to ‘critique power’ (as it is often put) today lead to a rather sterile form of political engagement, in which denunciation (the politics of the ‘anti’) takes the place of positive political programs, and the strategies of government that such positive programs necessarily entail. Attention to some of Foucault’s own remarks about politics hints at a different political sensibility, in which empirical experimentation rather than moralistic denunciation takes center place. This article identifies some examples of such experimentation that come out of recent research on the politics of social assistance in southern Africa, and draws conclusions regarding the prospects for developing a ‘left art of government’.

‘Could you define the sense you give the word “political”’? Michel Foucault as a political philosopher (Hans Sluga)

Foucault’s political thinking is focused on the concept of power relations. Under the influence of Nietzsche he proposes two different accounts of how power is related to human action. Nietzsche had argued, on the basis of a reading of Kant’s antinomies of pure reason, for two different accounts of that relationship. On the one hand, he had sought to understand action as a phenomenon of the will to power; on the other, he had also spoken of the will to power as an aspect of human agency. On Nietzsche’s views, we need to assert both positions even though they are for us irreconcilable. In his writings on power and action Foucault finds himself driven into adopting a similarly dual view. While he speaks of action in the nineteen seventies as subsidiary to power relations, he reverses himself in the nineteen eighties by treating power as a feature of human action. Just like Nietzsche, he offers us no way of reconciling these two distinct accounts.

Political science after Foucault (Mark Bevir)

This article concerns the relevance of postfoundationalism, including the ideas of Michel Foucault, for political science. The first half of the article distinguishes three forms of postfoundationalism, all of which draw some of their inspiration from Foucault. First, the governmentality literature draws on Marxist theories of social control, and then absorbs Foucault’s focus on power/knowledge. Second, the post-Marxists combine the formal linguistics of Saussure with a focus on hegemonic discourses. Third, some social humanists infuse Foucauldian themes into the New Left’s focus on culture, agency and resistance. The second half of the article then describes a research program that may bring together these varieties of postfoundationalism. This research program includes aggregate concepts that overtly allow for the constitutive role of meanings in social life and the contingent nature of these meanings. The concepts are: situated agency, practice and power. A postfoundational research program also needs concepts that demarcate a historicist form of explanation, that is, concepts such as narrative, tradition and dilemma. Finally, this research program contains specific empirical focuses to link these aggregate and explanatory concepts back to governmentality, post-Marxism and social humanism.

Archaeological choreographic practices: Foucault and Forsythe (Mark Franko)

Although Michel Foucault never wrote of dance as an example of a bodily discipline in the classical age, he did affect the art of contemporary ballet through his influence on the work of William Forsythe. This article interprets Foucault’s influence on Forsythe up until the early 1990s and also examines how Forsythe’s choreography ‘responded’ to issues of agency, inscription and discipline that characterize Foucault’s thought on corporeality. Ultimately, it asks whether Forsythe’s use of Foucauldian theory leads to a reinterpretation of inscription in Foucault.

Foucault on painting (Catherine M. Soussloff)

Michel Foucault’s understanding of painting oriented him and his readers to an alternative history of art through a means or an approach well known to philosophers and literary critics, that of irony. A close reading of the first chapter of The Order of Things shows that Foucault rejected the traditional interpretations of art history generated by a focus on the intentions of the individual artist, the identification of the subjects portrayed, and the expectations of a genre, relying instead on a synthesis of the approaches to painting given by Merleau-Ponty and Jacques Lacan, which converged with his ironic approach.

For more information, click here.

Programme “Le théâtre des nerfs” – Lausanne, 24-26 novembre 2011



Cinémathèque suisse, Casino de Montbenon, allée Ernest-Ansermet 3, Lausanne

13h00 Accueil par Prof. François Vallotton, Université de Lausanne (UNIL)

13h15 Introduction par Prof. Vincent Barras, UNIL

13h30 Conférence inaugurale

Prof. Rae Beth Gordon, Paris – Université du Connecticut

L’Archéologie des neurones miroirs : les théories psychophysiologiques et le corps du spectateur à la fin du XIXe siècle


Modération: Mireille Berton, UNIL

14h30 Prof. Laurent Guido, UNIL

Un rythme contagieux: conceptions et images du mimétisme corporel dans le cinéma des premiers temps

15h00 Benoît Turquety, UNIL

Monstration/démonstration: l’image dans la science au tournant du XXe siècle

15h30 Aurore Luescher, UNIL

«A l’usage des médecins, chirurgiens et amateurs de photographie.» Culture visuelle, pratiques et discours médicaux autour de 1900

16h00 Pause

16h30 Natasha Ruiz Gomez, Université d’Essex

Le musée Charcot et l’art de la pathologie

17h00 Mettre en scène l’inconscient – présentation d’œuvres filmiques par l’artiste Zoe Beloff, New York 8/10 CHF

20h00 Le théâtre des nerfs à l’écran: projection de films 8/10 CHF


Université de Lausanne, campus Dorigny, ISDC, 1er étage


Modération: Céline Eidenbenz, UNIL

9h00 Nicole Edelman, Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense

L’affaire Castellan de 1865 à nos jours : magnétisme ? suggestion? aliénation? séduction?

9h30 Jacqueline Carroy, EHESS, Centre Koyré, Paris

Le théâtre des nerfs et de la science selon François de Curel

10h00 Valentina Anker, Genève

Il mondo novo? Mars, hypnose et marges du Symbolisme

10h30 Pause

11h00 Processus hypnotique et création: performance de l’artiste chorégraphe

Catherine Contour, Grenoble



Modération: Prof. Laurent Guido, UNIL

14h00 Thibaud Trochu, Université de Paris I

Regards croisés sur les « créations somnambuliques » d’Hélène Smith, ou l’état de transe comme condition d’une esthétique du bizarre. Les approches de Théodore Flournoy et Waldemar Deonna

14h30 Alexandra Bacopoulos-Viau, Université de Cambridge

Écriture automatique et avant-gardes au tournant du XXe siècle : les récits de l’inconscient au carrefour des discours spirite, médicopsychologique et littéraire

15h00 Pause

15h30 Prof. Dario Gamboni, Université de Genève

«Mains intelligentes » et «œil qui écoute » : la céramique de Gauguin comme performance

16h00 Prof. Alessandra Violi, Université de Bergame

Seeing through the hands : Tarots as medium, magic and symptom around 1900

16h30 Prof. Vincent Barras et Céline Eidenbenz, UNIL

Tirer la langue : des tics convulsifs aux grimaces incontrôlées

Lieu: Anthropole, salle 3120

17h15 Expérimenter l’hypnose pour changer de position: atelier en compagnie de Catherine

Contour, Grenoble


Auditoire Jéquier-Doge, rue du Bugnon 44, niveau 8, Lausanne


Modération: Prof. Vincent Barras, UNIL

9h30 Samuel Thévoz, UNIL

Dans « les infirmeries de l’âme » : le premier théâtre de Maeterlinck

10h00 Patrick Désile, CNRS Paris

L’énigme du « Théâtre-Réaliste » (1891-1906)

10h30 Sarah Burkhalter, Université de Genève

«Corps inconscient », « corps naturel » : corsets inavoués de la danse moderne ?

11h00 Pause

11h30 Prof. Pascal Rousseau, Université de Paris I Panthéon Sorbonne

La migration des corps. Danse, hypnose et médiumnisme au passage du siècle

12h00 Jean-Christophe Valtat, Université Blaise-Pascal, Clermont-Ferrand

Le cinéma comme machine à influence et modèle de l’hallucination

12h30 Mireille Berton, UNIL

Méliès, expert anti-fraude médianique : l’attraction entre illusionnisme et spiritisme

Séminaire Psychologie, psychiatrie, psychanalyse : histoires croisées

ehess logoSéminaire « Psychologie, psychiatrie, psychanalyse : histoires croisées » au Centre Alexandre Koyré pour l’histoire des sciences organisé par Jacqueline CARROY (Directrice d’études, E.H.E.S.S.), Jean-Christophe COFFIN (Maître de conférences, Université Paris Descartes), Annick OHAYON (Maître de conférences honoraire, Université de Paris VIII Saint-Denis) et Régine PLAS (Professeur honoraire, Université Paris Descartes)

Psychologie, psychiatrie et psychanalyse ont contribué et contribuent à constituer le champ des savoirs et des pratiques sur l’homme. Il nous semble important de développer à leur endroit une approche historienne. Ce séminaire a pour propos de confronter les histoires de la psychologie, de la psychiatrie et de la psychanalyse, et d’explorer les territoires dévolus à l’homme moral, physique et social dans une période allant du 18e au 20e siècle. Nous souhaitons privilégier la confrontation des approches et des points de vue afin de mettre en œuvre une histoire intellectuelle, culturelle et sociale du domaine « psy ».

Soutenu par la Société d’Histoire des Savoirs sur le Psychisme (SHSP), ce séminaire est ouvert aux chercheurs et aux étudiants en histoire et en histoire des sciences, aux praticiens et aux chercheurs en psychologie, psychiatrie et psychanalyse et plus généralement en sciences humaines, ainsi qu’à toute personne intéressée.

 PROGRAMME 2011-2012

18 NOVEMBRE 2011 : Régine PLAS (Université Paris Descartes) et Annick OHAYON (Université de Paris 8) : D’hier à aujourd’hui : de quelques idées reçues en psychologie

2 DÉCEMBRE 2011 : François VATIN (Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense) : Psychanalyse et science sociale: la psychologie de la colonisation d’Octave Mannoni 

16 DÉCEMBRE 2011 : Agnès DESMAZIÈRES (Fondation pour les sciences religieuses, Bologna): Repenser l’histoire de la psychanalyse : entre culture, science et religion

13 JANVIER 2012 : Brigitte CHAMAK (Cermes3) : L’autisme n’est plus ce qu’il était : changement de définitions, transformations des représentations et mouvements activistes

27 JANVIER 201: Julie MAZALEIGUE-LABASTE (Université d’Amiens) : Psychiatres et pervers sexuels en France (1870-1900) : la dangerosité en théorie et en pratique

10 FÉVRIER 201: Bérenger CABESTAN (EHESS) : Des rapports du physique et du moral : élaboration et conduite des analyses psychologiques chez les premiers collaborateurs des Annales médico-psychologiques

9 MARS 2012 : Sigrid LEYSSEN (Université de Bâle) : Les images excitantes dans la phénoménologie expérimentale d’Albert Michotte

23 MARS 2012 : Christophe CAPUANO ( Université de Lyon 2) : Evaluer la prise en charge d’un malade mental à domicile : la lente construction d’une expertise en France, années 1960-1990

6 AVRIL 201: Enrique LAFUENTE (Uned, Madrid) : Échos d’une génération brisée: Emilio Mira y Lopez et la santé mentale

4 MAI 2012 : Alexandra BACOPOULOS-VIAU (University of Cambridge) : André Breton et le rejet de la psychologie janétienne dans les années 1920

25 MAI 2012 : Regina CAMPOS (Université fédérale de Minas Gerais, Brésil) et Carolina Bandeira de Melo (Université fédérale de Minas Gerais – EHESS) : Histoires croisées de la psychologie brésilienne et de la psychologie française entre les deux-guerres

1ER JUIN 2012 : Programme fixé ultérieurement

Les séminaires se tiendront le vendredi, de 14 h. à 16 h, à partir du 18 novembre 2011, au Centre Koyré (27 rue Damesme 75013 Paris, 5° étage).

Pour plus d’informations, contacter Jacqueline Carroy :

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