Revisiting Foucault and the Iranian Revolution

Revisiting Foucault and the Iranian Revolution in the Era of ISIS and of Islamophobia

Janet Afary and Kevin B. Anderson
This presentation and discussion will be moderated by Chad Krautzer

We will discuss in light of today our 2005 book on Foucault and the Iranian Revolution of 1978-79. His fervent opposition to the Shah and US imperialism and his astute assessment of Iran as a new type of revolution, neither liberal nor leftist, were marred by a surprisingly uncritical stance toward the upsurge of radical Islamism and an untoward silence on the issues of gender and sexuality. We also discuss Marxist and feminist critiques of Foucault at the time, and their implications for today.

Janet Afary and Kevin B. Anderson are the authors of Foucault and the Iranian Revolution: Gender and the Seductions of Islamism. They teach at University of California, Santa Barbara, in sociology and religious studies, respectively. Afary is also the author of Sexual Politics in Modern Iran (2009) and Anderson of Marx at the Margins (2010).

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