Michel Foucault’s rhetorical practice: the 1961 preface to History and Madness

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This article examines Foucault as a rhetorician rather than as a historian of parrhesia and rhetoric. It explores what we can learn about his philosophy by examining it through the lens of his rhetorical practices. Focusing on his famous 1961 preface to History and Madness, it suggests that Foucault’s model of philosophy entails a rhetoric of conversion or transformation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)142-167
Number of pages26
JournalPhilosophy and Rhetoric
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2023


  • Foucault
  • limit-experiences
  • philosophy as a way of life
  • prefaces
  • rhetoric

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