An unpublished piece by Foucault from 1974, “Émergence des equipment collectifs“, has recently been discovered and published online by Ici et Ailleurs, with an Introduction by Philippe Chevallier.
Philippe kindly sent me the essay a few days before publication, as it explicitly links to the work Foucault did with Guattari’s CERFI group – a link I’ve discussed in my books on Foucault. I’ve previously discussed the importance of Foucault’s collaborative projects on this site, and put together a bibliography of references, which can be found here. I’ve just added this essay.
With Philippe’s agreement and encouragement, I’m sharing below the brief note I sent him. there is more to be said about its content and connections, of course, and we hope that readers will follow up with comments on the Ici et ailleurs site:
Dear PhilippeMy apologies for taking this time to have a chance to read it. It’s been a very busy start of term.It’s an interesting text, though not especially new to people who have read Surveiller et punir, the CERFI reports and related materials. I think your introduction is very helpful, and I’m grateful you mentioned my two books in the revised version. I especially used the IMEC archive to situate the published materials in relation to the overall shape of the project. My books give all the details of the things that I found. I’d be happy to send you copies of both if they’d be of interest – either e-copies for you to consult now, or physical copies of the books if you can wait a little while. It would be a pleasure to share them.The IMEC material is important, though I am fairly sure that this text is not found there. I did the research with the CERFI material many years ago, when the IMEC collection was still in Paris, though I have been back since it moved to Caen, to look at other material. One thing that seemed important to me, and might be worth mentioning in your Introduction, is that there was an important link between the work done in the CERFI projects and the Collège de France seminar. You indicate this in a note, but it might be more prominent. Once the Pierre Rivière collection was finished, I think that there is an important overlap between Foucault’s seminar and some of the work he does with CERFI. The reports link to Les machines à guerir, as you say, which is certainly in part of a seminar project, and there is a link too to the Politiques de l’habitat collection Foucault directed. We know so little about what Foucault did in those seminars, beyond the paragraphs in the course summaries.I think both of your hypotheses are correct – Foucault used his name to help get some funding, but i do also think that his seminar influenced his own writing. There are some important links between work that happened collaboratively and later lectures and writings.The title obviously links it to the CERFI work, but I wonder how we’d read it without that title – it doesn’t say much about the notion of ‘equipment collectifs’, and many of its themes connect to works published just under Foucault’s own name. I also see some links to the Rio medicine lectures of 1974, as well as Surveiller et punir and the CERFI projects. 1974 makes a lot of sense as its date.You already mention many of the pieces listed here, but a few years ago I made a bibliography of Foucault’s Collaborative Projects. It may be of interestThanks so much for sharing this with me. I’ll look forward to seeing it published and will certainly share links on my blog. Please do let me know when it’s available.with very best wishesStuart