Studies in Philosophy and Education

, Volume 20, Issue 1, pp 75-91

First online:

A Critical Theory of the Self: Wittgenstein, Nietzsche, Foucault

  • James D. MarshallAffiliated withThe University of Auckland

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Critical thinking, considered as a version of informallogic, must consider emotions and personal attitudesin assessing assertions and conclusions in anyanalysis of discourse. It must therefore presupposesome notion of the self. Critical theory may be seenas providing a substantive and non-neutral positionfor the exercise of critical thinking. It thereforemust presuppose some notion of the self. This paperargues for a Foucauldean position on the self toextend critical theory and provide a particularposition on the self for critical thinking. Thisposition on the self is developed from moretraditional accounts of the self from Descartes toSchopenhauer, Nietzsche and Wittgenstein.

self care of the self critical theory Schopenhauer Nietzsche Wittgenstein Foucault