RLFR 336
Renegotiating Subjectivity with Foucault and Deleuze: Power, Resistance, Becoming Fall 2016
Division I Writing Skills
Cross-listed RLFR 336 / PHIL 336
This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

One of the most central concepts in Modern philosophy is that of the subject. At the outset, the subject is ontologically constituted within a Cartesian framework: the subject is a unified consciousness, constitutive of personal identity and endowed with universal moral and cognitive capacity. Thereby, the subject is also endowed with agency and that which can be held responsible for its actions. While still considered essential both in terms of personal identity and agency, this nuclear subject, in post-war and contemporary philosophy, came to be understood in terms of an ongoing intersubjective, social, historical and cultural construction essentially constituted in and through language. However, as investigated in the works of French philosophers Michel Foucault and Gilles Deleuze, this attempt in recent modernity to overcome the subject has resulted in new ways of re-establishing the subject as an ontological basis for self-understanding such as expressed for example in various kinds of identity politics, which in turn makes it the object for various power structures: hence, the subject understood as personal identity is in many ways being subjected to authority, power and abuse. This course proposes a joint reading of a selection of key texts of Foucault and Deleuze problematizing subjectivity and its processes in terms of subjectivation, subjectification, “asujetissement”, resistance and lines of flight, in order to investigate the possibilities of renegotiating the conditions of subjectivity in our post-subjective era, in both the individual and the collective sense.
The Class: Format: seminar
Limit: 19
Expected: 15
Class#: 2038
Grading: no pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: three short papers (5-6 pages); one final 10-page essay; participation in discussions
Extra Info: may not be taken on a pass/fail basis
Extra Info 2: meets Division 2 requirement if registration is under PHIL; meets Division 1 requirement if registration is under RLFR
Prerequisites: at least one previous course in philosophy and/or Critical theory
Enrollment Preferences: Philosophy majors/Critical Theory majors
Distributions: Division I Writing Skills
Notes: This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
RLFR 336 Division I PHIL 336 Division II

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