Economics Dictionary of Arguments

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Discourse: Discourse is a form of communication involving the exchange of ideas, information, and opinions. It can be spoken or written, and it can take place in a variety of settings. Discourses are important for sharing thoughts, learning, building relationships, solving problems, and making decisions. See also Discourse theory.
Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Michel Foucault on Discourse - Dictionary of Arguments

II 33ff
Discourse/Foucault: First, negative work: we have to separate ourselves from a whole complex of concepts: 1.Tradition, 2. unreflected continuities.
Def tradition/Foucault: thanks to it one can isolate the news on a background of permanence, similarities and repetitions get a causal painting. The term connects to distance and through time. It groups scattered events. FoucaultVs: there are never sharp boundaries. In another system, there are quite different connections. The term should not be used.
Discourse/Foucault: 1. False assumption that there is always a secret origin. 2. false assumption, every discourse was secretly based on what had already been said.
Instead new: treating the discourse in the mechanism of its insistence. Thus, the project of a pure description of the discursive events appears as a horizon for the investigation of the units formed therein. No analysis of the language. Instead: Question: how is it that a certain statement has appeared and no other in its place?
Thinking/discourse: this description of discourse is not the history of thought. The history of thought would attempt to examine the intentions of subjects.
>History of consciousness
, >Subject, >Intention.
Discourse: discourse is about the re-finding of the silent, muttering, inexhaustible speech that invigorates the voice that you hear from the inside.
Thinking: analysis of thought is always allegorical in relation to the discourse that it uses. Question: What was really said?
Discourse: is analyzed differently: one must show why it was so and not otherwise. It is about events that can neither exhaust the language nor the meaning completely. Not psychologically! No groupings.
II 48ff
Discourse: could one speak of an identity of the topics? For example, whether evolution had been the theme from Buffon to Darwin?
Foucault: this subject always implied more than one knew about it, but forced a fundamental choice.
Answer: instead of creating chains of logical conclusions or tables of differences, one should describe systems of control. Formation rules.
II 61ff
Analysis of the discourse: discovers no form, but a set of rules that are immanent in a practice.
Not the objects remain constant, nor the area they form, not even the point of emergence or their characterization, but the comparing of the surfaces where they appear.
E.g. We do not want to know whether the same person was mad at any time. (Such a story of the speaker is undoubtedly possible).
But the point here is not to neutralize discourse historically, but, on the contrary, to preserve it in its consistency, in its own complexity.
It is not a matter of investigating the meaning-change of words and concepts. The words are as far removed from our analysis as the things themselves.
It is rather about why an object has become the subject of an investigation.
For example, why the crime has become an object of the medical examination or, for example, the sexual deviation object of psychiatric discourse.
Discourse: not a pure and simple limitation of things and words, no thin contact surface between reality and language. Rather, the analysis makes the rules visible. The rules and practices form the objects.
II 154f
Def discourse/Foucault: set of statements belonging to the same formation system (discursive formation). For example, clinical, economic discourse.
Def formulation: An event that can always be found spatial-temporally.
Def sentence/proposition: the units that can recognize grammar or logic in a character set.
Def statement: the existential modality of this character set.
Discursive formation: is now to be formulated into one law of the series.
Concept: the description of the statements turns to a certain vertical dimension to the existence conditions of the different set of meanings.
Description of the statement: Paradox: the description does not attempt to circumvent the linguistic performances, but the statement is not directly visible. It is at the same time not visible and not hidden.
Analysis of the statement: historically, but outside of any interpretation: it does not question what is said according to what they conceal, but rather the way in which they exist, what it means to be manifested.
Meaning: different meanings exist on an identical statement basis. But missing regularity is not a hidden meaning.
Statement: no unit next to, above or below the sentences or propositions.
Meaning: always points to something else.
Language/Foucault: always seems to be populated by the other, the otherworldly, the distant. It is hollowed out by the absence.
II 165ff
How can the description of the statements be adapted to the analysis of the discursive formations?
Concept: I do not proceed by means of a linear deduction, but in concentric circles.
Theory/Foucault: I have not set up a strict theoretical model but released a coherent description area.
Def Discursive Formation: the general presentation system, in a group of linguistic performances obeys. It is not the only system by which it is controlled; it is also directed by a logical, linguistic, psychological system.
A statement belongs to a discursive formation, like a sentence to a text and a proposition to a deductive totality.
Def discourse/Foucault: a set of statements as far as they belong to the same discursive formation (formation system).
Def "Discursive practice": not expressive action, also not rational activity, not competency, but the totality of anonymous, historical rules, rules always determined in time and space, which in a given epoche, have defined the operating conditions of the statement function for a social, economic, geographical or linguistic environment.
>Discourse theory.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.

Foucault I
M. Foucault
Les mots et les choses: Une archéologie des sciences humaines , Paris 1966 - The Order of Things: An Archaeology of the Human Sciences, New York 1970
German Edition:
Die Ordnung der Dinge. Eine Archäologie der Humanwissenschaften Frankfurt/M. 1994

Foucault II
Michel Foucault
l’Archéologie du savoir, Paris 1969
German Edition:
Archäologie des Wissens Frankfurt/M. 1981

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