Studies in Philosophy and Education

, Volume 21, Issue 1, pp 17–35

Voices of Silence: Foucault, Disability, and the Question of Self-determination

Authors

  • Nirmala Erevelles
    • Educational Foundations, Leadership and TechnologyAuburn University
Article

DOI: 10.1023/A:1014473121819

Cite this article as:
Erevelles, N. Studies in Philosophy and Education (2002) 21: 17. doi:10.1023/A:1014473121819

Abstract

In this paper I examine two controversialissues that occurred in two different centuriesbut that are inextricably linked with eachother – the 1835 murder committed by a Frenchpeasant, Pierre Riviere and documented byMichel Foucault and the 1990's debate regardingthe controversial methods of FacilitatedCommunication used with students labeledautistic in the United States. In this paper Iargue that both controversies foreground thecrisis of the humanist subject. In other words,I argue that both controversies are generatedby a seemingly simple question: Are personsidentified as mentally disabledcapable/incapable of representing themselves?In response to this question, I will use amaterialist analysis to explore theimplications that the poststructuralistdepiction of the humanist subject as a fictionholds for both the Riviere case and theFacilitated Communication debate.

disabilityFoucaultFacilitated Communicationmaterialist analysisquestion of self-determination

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2002