Foucault's Strange Eros

Lynne Huffer

Columbia University Press

Foucault's Strange Eros

Pub Date: June 2020

ISBN: 9780231197151

288 Pages

Format: Paperback

List Price: $28.00£22.00

Pub Date: June 2020

ISBN: 9780231197144

288 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price: $95.00£78.00

Pub Date: June 2020

ISBN: 9780231552011

288 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price: $27.99£22.00

Foucault's Strange Eros

Lynne Huffer

Columbia University Press

What is the strange eros that haunts Foucault’s writing? In this deeply original consideration of Foucault’s erotic ethics, Lynne Huffer provocatively rewrites Foucault as a Sapphic poet. She uncovers eros as a mode of thought that erodes the interiority of the thinking subject. Focusing on the ethical implications of this mode of thought, Huffer shows how Foucault’s poetic archival method offers a way to counter the disciplining of speech.

At the heart of this method is a conception of the archive as Sapphic: the past’s remains are, like Sappho’s verses, hole-ridden, scattered, and dissolved by time. Listening for eros across fragmented texts, Huffer stages a series of encounters within an archive of literary and theoretical readings: the eroticization of violence in works by Freud and Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, the historicity of madness in the Foucault-Derrida debate, the afterlives of Foucault’s antiprison activism, and Monique Wittig’s Sapphic materialism. Through these encounters, Foucault’s Strange Eros conceives of ethics as experiments in living that work poetically to make the present strange. Crafting fragments that dissolve into Sapphic brackets, Huffer performs the ethics she describes in her own practice of experimental writing. Foucault’s Strange Eros hints at the self-hollowing speech of an eros that opens a space for the strange.
Foucault's Strange Eros challenges its readers to describe aptly, to touch delicately their seeking, mortal, embodied selves. The book elicits and sustains their interest. It rejoices on some pages to weep on others, but it is animated throughout by generous reading and creative responding. Mark Jordan, author of Convulsing Bodies: Religion and Resistance in Foucault

About the Author

Lynne Huffer is Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor of Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Emory University. She is the author of five books, including Mad for Foucault: Rethinking the Foundations of Queer Theory (Columbia, 2009) and Are the Lips a Grave?: A Queer Feminist on the Ethics of Sex (Columbia, 2013).