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Re-reading The Foucault-Deleuze Split with Regards to The Problem of The Status of Resistance

This study plans to re-read Michel Foucault’s crisis and process of thought after the crisis through his split with Gilles Deleuze. Having discovered a revolutionary analytics of power for political philosophy Foucault made an intellectual breakthrough that enabled reformulation of many questions. Nevertheless, his effort to do away with with juridico-discursive model of power which haunts political philosophy by focusing on positive and productive modalities of power, led to an aporia in terms of its implications with regard to resistance. Because, the more his studies which focus on the microphysics of power as a whole of strategic relations got closer to a description of a power immanent to society, the more they drifted away from all the possible theoretical exits which he could formulate resistance outside a correlation of power in a more active context. Upon recognising the problem, Deleuze criticised Foucault for his theoretical analysis as it presented a major problem for the status of resistance. Deleuze claims that a revolutionary political philosophy that eludes aporias of Foucauldian analytics, which tend to reduce the entire social field into a field strategized by power, became possible with the concept of agencement he developed with Félix Guattari. This study seeks to demonstrate that the split between the two philosophers is a result of the fact that whereas Foucault’s analysis always departs from the data of instituted formations, Deleuze takes the institutive as his data. The ultimate goal of the study is to unearth in what ways Foucault’s post-split thought in line with Deleuze’s critique, introduced new analytical elements so as to confer a institutive context on resistance.


Deleuze, Foucault, Lines of Flight, Power, Resistance.


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