Table of Contents Table of Contents
Previous Page  224 / 126 Next Page
Show Menu
Previous Page 224 / 126 Next Page
Page Background






and “the consciousness/conscience of us all,” “counterposing to

power, despotism and the abuses and arrogance of wealth the

universality of justice and the equity of an ideal law” (1980:

126, 128). This category derives from the jurist or notable, and

finds the “fullest manifestation in the writer, the bearer of

values and significations” (128). Their place has been taken

since the Second World War by the specific type of

intellectuals: savants or experts possessing specific knowledge

and utilizing their expertise within specific sectors (129). Both

categories are closely related to politics: the jurist and the

writer have long fought in political struggles, and

techno-scientific professionals could encounter manipulation

by the powerful and the minority (127-130). Unlike the

idealistic Benda, however, Foucault deems it “a dangerous

error” to politically disregard the intellectuals (131). What

must be taken into account is that they “operate and struggle at

the general level of that régime of truth” crucial “to the

structure and functioning of our society” (132). In other words,

it is the role the intellectuals play with respect to the

production of truth that Foucault pays heed to.

Despite their apparently different stances on political

involvement, these theoretical concepts share certain

commonality: all these thinkers highlight the public role of the

intellectuals, who act as the conscience of the people,

counteracting the unjust and speaking truth to power, or as the

thinking and organizing element of society, directing the ideas

and aspirations of the people. Conscientious and

nonconforming, these representative figures are linked to the

functioning of an apparatus of truth. Such delineation may to

some extent appeal to Joyce, a nonconformist who represents

the general paralysis of his country, searches for independence

from restraints, refuses to serve any master, emphasizes

universal values such as love and brotherhood, and repudiates

hatred and parochialism. As is generally admitted, resistance