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Negative EcstasiesGeorges Bataille and the Study of Religion$
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Jeremy Biles and Kent Brintnall

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780823265190

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823265190.001.0001

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Foucault’s Sacred Sociology

Foucault’s Sacred Sociology

(p.169) Foucault’s Sacred Sociology
Negative Ecstasies

Mark D. Jordan

Fordham University Press

Some of the most important lines in Foucault’s genealogy are the ones that connect him to Bataille or to Bataillean projects like the College of Sociology. Foucault negotiates this inheritance in a number of his own texts. He interprets Bataille directly in essays from the 1960s on the effects of the death of the European God for bodily life and its languages. Foucault interprets Bataille indirectly and more originally when he chooses Bataille’s term supplice as one focus for Discipline and Punish. The composition of that book is Foucault’s response to the question posed by the old College’s project of “sacred sociology”: How is it possible to write about power over bodies in languages confected by power?

Keywords:   Foucault, Bataille, the sacred, power, bodies, writing

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