A copy of Michel Foucault’s Folie et déraison: Histoire de la folie à l’âge classique

HFIt’s fairly well known that there are various editions of Foucault’s first major work – Histoire de la folie à l’âge classique.

There is the original 1961 edition: Folie et déraison: Histoire de la folie à l’âge classique, published by Plon and based on his thesis.

An abridged edition was published in the Union générale d’éditions 10/18 series in 1964 as Histoire de la folie à l’âge classique. This was later translated into English, along with an additional chapter of the original, as Madness and Civilisation: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason.

In 1972, Foucault reissued almost the full book, with Gallimard. The original preface was missing, a new one was in its place, and there were two appendices – ‘Mon corps, ce papier, ce feu’ and ‘La folie, l’absence d’œuvre’. That was the version translated as History of Madness in 2006, which also includes the original preface.

inside coverIn 1976, the 1972 version (i.e. with the new preface and without the original one) but without the appendices was reissued in Gallimard’s cheaper Tel series. This is the version that is still in print today. The 1961 preface and the 1972 appendices all appear in Dits et écrits. The book will be included in the forthcoming Oeuvres in the Pléiade series, which is supposed to be a critical edition, so I’d assume both prefaces at least will be in there.

What I hadn’t realised is that the 1961 edition was reprinted by Plon in 1964 – possibly also in other years. And it’s a copy of that 1964 reprint that I found for a reasonable price from a Parisian bookstore. Copies of the 1961 original are very expensive – hundreds of pounds or more, depending on condition.

The copy I bought is in almost perfect condition. The pages are still uncut, and it’s in a plastic wrapper so the cover is well-preserved. It’s not a first edition of course, but it is a reprint of the first edition. I had copies of all the other above editions – 1964 10/18 abridgement, the 1972, the 1976 and both translations – before, so this was a nice discovery.

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2 Responses to A copy of Michel Foucault’s Folie et déraison: Histoire de la folie à l’âge classique

  1. Pingback: Top posts on Progressive Geographies this week | Progressive Geographies

  2. Pingback: Books received – Foucault, Hollis, Rudwick, Maier | Progressive Geographies

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