Foucault on the radio, 1975 – a different, edited translation of an interesting interview

In 1975, Foucault was interviewed by Jacques Chancel on the radio. It is reprinted in Dits et écrits as text 161, “Radioscopie de Michel Foucault”. The French text is here and the recording here.

Comparing the transcription and the recording shows that it has been cleaned up quite a bit – the recording is a bit more informal in places, and some of the hesitations or the bits where Foucault and Chancel talk over each other have been tidied.

The translation which I knew about before is included in Foucault: Live as ‘Talk Show’. Like other translations in that collection it isn’t always entirely reliable, and it’s possible that it was made direct from the recording, rather than the publication. Especially towards the end, some bits are not translated.

But there is a different, albeit heavily edited, translation of this interesting interview, which appeared in Impulse, Vol 15 No 1, Winter 1989, pp. 50-55. It was transcribed by Lisa Webster, and translated by Ronald B. DeSousa.

The scans are taken from a copy of Impulse from the library of Amy White, an artist based in the US, who brought this version of the interview to my attention. A pdf of the translation is available here.

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