Stuart Elden's book The Early Foucault has been published by Polity Press.
It was not until 1961 that Foucault published his first major book, History of Madness. He had already been working as an academic for a decade, teaching in Lille and Paris, writing, organizing cultural programmes and lecturing in Uppsala, Warsaw and Hamburg. Although he published little in this period, Foucault wrote much more, some of which has been preserved and only recently become available to researchers. Drawing on archives in France, Germany, Switzerland, Sweden and the USA, this is the most detailed study yet of Foucault’s early career. It recounts his debt to teachers including Louis Althusser, Jean Hyppolite, Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Jean Wahl; his diploma thesis on Hegel; and his early teaching career. It explores his initial encounters with Georges Canguilhem, Jacques Lacan, and Georges Dumézil, and analyses his sustained reading of Friedrich Nietzsche, Edmund Husserl and Martin Heidegger. Also included are detailed discussions of his translations of Ludwig Binswanger, Victor von Weizsäcker, and Immanuel Kant; his clinical work with Georges and Jacqueline Verdeaux; and his cultural work outside of France.Investigating how Foucault came to write History of Madness, Stuart Elden shows this great thinker’s deep engagement with phenomenology, anthropology and psychology. An outstanding, meticulous work of intellectual history, The Early Foucault sheds new light on the formation of a major twentieth-century figure.
This is the third of a series of books tracing the intellectual history of Foucault's entire career. Foucault's Last Decade was published in 2016 and Foucault: The Birth of Power in 2017. Stuart is currently researching the final book in the series on Foucault's work in the 1960s which he hopes to complete in 2022.
There is a post about the research and writing of the book on the Polity blog and a lot more detail on Stuart's website.
Keith Hyams and Morten Byskov have been awarded AHRC GCRF funding for their project ‘Inserting Ethics into Climate Adaptation and Resilience Policy’. The project will work with collaborators at the University of Cape Town and with Cape Town city’s climate adaptation department to look at how issues of ethics and justice can be incorporated into responses to climate-related risks. Cape Town has already come perilously close to a city-wide drought and regularly suffers from flooding: the project seeks to ensure that the most vulnerable communities such as informal settlements are incorporated in an ethical manner into city-level protection plans. In addition, Morten Byskov has been awarded a competitive Fellowship at Warwick’s Institute for Global Sustainable Development, which aims to bring researchers together from across Warwick to strengthen cross-departmental collaboration and research in the area of sustainability.
Stuart Elden has been awarded a British Academy/Leverhulme small grant for a project entitled ‘The Early Foucault: Retracing Intellectual History through Archival Sources’. This work builds on his recent books on Foucault’s later career – Foucault’s Last Decade (Polity, 2016) and Foucault: The Birth of Power (Polity, 2017) – in a study of his intellectual formation. The research will involve working with archives of Foucault’s papers in Paris and Normandy, his personal library held at Yale, and papers and libraries of research collaborators in Tübingen, Princeton and Irvine. It will also involve a visit to the Carolina Rediviva library in Uppsala, where Foucault researched his History of Madness. The research will lead to a book entitled The Early Foucault (under contract with Polity), and the initial work for a book on Foucault’s career in the 1960s.
More detail on the project on the early Foucault can be found on Stuart’s blog.
Stuart Elden’s book Shakespearean Territories was published in late 2018 by University of Chicago Press. The book uses readings of a number of Shakespeare’s plays to explore different aspects of territory.
Shakespeare’s plays explore many territorial themes: from the division of the kingdom in King Lear, to the relations among Denmark, Norway, and Poland in Hamlet, to questions of disputed land and the politics of banishment in Richard II. Shakespeare dramatized a world of technological advances in measuring, navigation, cartography, and surveying, and his plays open up important ways of thinking about strategy, economy, the law, and colonialism, providing critical insight into a significant juncture in history.
The book explores how Shakespeare can be read as developing a nuanced understanding of the complicated concept and practice of territory and, more broadly, the political-geographical relations between people, power, and place.
More details about the book can be found at the publisher website: https://www.press.uchicago.edu/ucp/books/book/chicago/S/bo28246205.html
Keith Hyams has been awarded funding from the ESRC Global Challenges Research Fund for the 2 year research project ‘Challenging Inequalities: An Indo-European Perspective’.
The project is a collaboration with the Economics Department at Warwick, the Centre de Sciences Humaines in Delhi, and others. It aims to look at appropriate definitions and approaches to the measurement of inequality, attitudes to inequality, and interventions to reduce inequality in a development context.