Foucault, Husserl and the philosophical roots of German neoliberalism
The article investigates and vindicates the surprising claim Foucault makes in his lecture series The Birth of Biopolitics that the philosophical roots of post-war German neoliberalism lie in Husserl's phenomenology. I study the similarities between Husserl's phenomenology and Walter Eucken's economic theory and examine the way that Husserl's idea of the historical a priori assumes a determinate role in Eucken's economic thinking. I also return to Foucault's lectures in order to show how a version of the historical a priori continues to operate in his history of governmentality, and how it functions as a counterpoint to the universalizing approach to the history of science, such as Husserl and Eucken's. I conclude by rephrasing my initial question on the philosophical connections between Husserl's phenomenology and German neoliberalism as a broader philosophical question on the political effects of our philosophical understanding of the history of science.
Oksala, J. (2016). Foucault, Husserl and the philosophical roots of German neoliberalism. Continental Philosophy Review 49 (1), pp. 115-126.
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