Michel Foucault Quotes

Who was Michel Foucault?

Paul-Michel Foucault was a French philosopher and writer.

Born October 15, 1926
Died June 25, 1984
Aged 57 years old

Books by Michel Foucault

Michel Foucault Sources

Best 15 Quotes by Michel Foucault

“Do not ask who I am and do not ask me to remain the same.”

“Do not think that one has to be sad in order to be militant, even though the thing one is fighting is abominable.”

“I don't feel that it is necessary to know exactly what I am. The main interest in life and work is to become someone else that you were not in the beginning.”

“I don't write a book so that it will be the final word; I write a book so that other books are possible, not necessarily written by me.”

“I'm no prophet. My job is making windows where there were once walls.”

“If you are not like everybody else, then you are abnormal, if you are abnormal , then you are sick. These three categories, not being like everybody else, not being normal and being sick are in fact very different but have been reduced to the same thing.”

“Maybe the target nowadays is not to discover what we are but to refuse what we are.”

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“Schools serve the same social functions as prisons and mental institutions- to define, classify, control, and regulate people.”

“The 'Enlightenment', which discovered the liberties, also invented the disciplines.”

“The intellectual was rejected and persecuted at the precise moment when the facts became incontrovertible, when it was forbidden to say that the emperor had no clothes.”

“What strikes me is the fact that in our society, art has become something which is related only to objects and not to individuals, or to life. That art is something which is specialized or which is done by experts who are artists. But couldn't everyone's life become a work of art? Why should the lamp or the house be an art object, but not our life?”

“You know the difference between a real science and a pseudoscience? A real science recognizes and accepts its own history without feeling attacked. When you tell a psychiatrist his mental institution came from a lazar house, he becomes infuriated.”

Madness and Civilization Quotes

“People know what they do; frequently they know why they do what they do; but what they don't know is what what they do does.”

Madness and Civilization

“What desire can be contrary to nature since it was given to man by nature itself?”

Madness and Civilization

Products by Michel Foucault

The History of Sexuality Quotes

“Where there is power, there is resistance.”

The History of Sexuality

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“If things were simple, word would have gotten around.”

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Michel Foucault Sources