Encyclopedia of Educational Philosophy and Theory

2017 Edition
| Editors: Michael A. Peters

Foucault’s Work in Philosophy and History of Education, Reception and Influence of

  • Lynn Fendler
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-287-588-4_492

In its relentlessly critical mode, Foucault’s philosophy challenged most of the boundaries that circumscribe traditional disciplinary fields and their methodological approaches. Either in spite of those challenges or because of them, Foucault’s work has been taken up in a startling array of intellectual fields ranging from philosophy and history to social work, religion, and education.

Foucault refused to advocate specific political agendas or methodological directives for intellectual inquiry. He also discouraged readers from following his lead: “What the intellectual can do is to provide instruments of analysis….But as for saying, ‘Here is what you must do!’, certainly not” (Foucault 1980, p. 62).

Although Foucault seldom referred to Nietzsche explicitly in his writings, Foucault did declare that the impact of Nietzsche’s writings on his philosophy was profound. For example, Nietzsche’s philosophy is like Foucault’s in that it does not follow in the tradition of a modern quest for...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Singapore 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Teacher EducationMichigan State UniversityEast LansingUSA