RLB262 Foucault, Discourse Analysis and a Theory of Religion

Faculty of Arts
Autumn 2020
Extent and Intensity
1/1/0. 5 credit(s). Type of Completion: k (colloquium).
Taught online.
Mgr. Milan Fujda, Ph.D. (lecturer)
Guaranteed by
doc. PhDr. David Zbíral, Ph.D.
Department for the Study of Religions - Faculty of Arts
Contact Person: Mgr. Ivona Vrzalová
Supplier department: Department for the Study of Religions - Faculty of Arts
each even Tuesday 12:00–13:40 B2.33
Course Enrolment Limitations
The course is only offered to the students of the study fields the course is directly associated with.

The capacity limit for the course is 30 student(s).
Current registration and enrolment status: enrolled: 1/30, only registered: 0/30
fields of study / plans the course is directly associated with
Course objectives
Michel Foucault is one of the most important thinkers of the 20th century. His thinking influenced contemporary development in many disciplines of social sciences. In each of the reflection of Foucault lead to a radical rethinking of traditional approaches. Foucault's analyses of discourse, power and the formation/disciplination of the self form the core of many methodological approaches in contemporary social sciences and the knowledge of Foucault is thus one of basic precondions of understanding contemporary social scientific discussions. For the Study of Religions Foucault's understanding of history as well as an elaboration of his ideas in sociology and cultural anthropology is extremely relevant.
The aim of this course therefore is to introduce students through reading and discussion into thinking of Michel Foucault. They will be introduced to his influence on contemporary social sciences and to chosen applications and elaborations of archeology of knowledge in social sciences.
Learning outcomes
At the end of this course, students will:
be able to utilize their solid knowledge of the fundamental principles and procedures of the Foucauldian archeology of knowledge;
know the possibilities of application of archaeological analysis in the social sciences;
know about the applications and elaborations of archaeological analysis in sociology and historiography;
be able to practise this analysis.
  • (0) Organisational meeting.
  • (1) Introductory lecture: Foucault, archeology, and contemporary social sciences.
  • (2) Discourse.
  • (3) Subject.
  • (4) Histrory and genealogy.
  • (5) Archeology.
  • (6) Social sciences and the birth of man.
  • (7) Discoursive a non-discoursive formations.
  • (8) Historical formations and their transformations.
  • (9) Power.
  • (10) Care of the self.
  • (11) Inspirations by Foucault I: Social field and capital (Pierre Bourdieu).
  • (12) Inspirations by Foucault II: Subaltern studies and analyses of power in a colonial context.
    required literature
  • FOUCAULT, Michel. Dohlížet a trestat :kniha o zrodu vězení. Translated by Čestmír Pelikán. Praha: Dauphin, 2000. 427 s. ISBN 80-86019-96-9. info
  • FOUCAULT, Michel. Myšlení vnějšku. Praha: Herrmann & synové, 1996. 303 s. info
    recommended literature
  • FOUCAULT, Michel. Slova a věci. Translated by Jan Rubáš. Vyd. 1. Brno: Computer Press, 2007. v, 309. ISBN 9788025117132. info
  • FOUCAULT, Michel. Vůle k vědění : dějiny sexuality. I. : Dějiny sexuality. I., Vůle k vědění (Přid.). Praha: Herrmann & synové, 1999. 189 s. info
  • DELEUZE, Gilles. Foucault. V Praze: Herrmann & synové, 1996. 191 s. info
  • FOUCAULT, Michel. Diskurs ; Autor ; Genealogie : tři studie. Vyd. 1. Praha: Svoboda, 1994. 115 s. ISBN 8020504060. info
Teaching methods
lectures, seminars
Assessment methods
Requirements for colloquium:
(1) Active discussion during seminars (alternatively submitted position papers) (20 %).
(2) Essay on a selected aspect of the Foucault's archeology (50 %).
(3) Oral colloquium concerning the essay (30 %).
Language of instruction
Further comments (probably available only in Czech)
The course is taught once in two years.
Teacher's information
1. If absent during a seminar discussion, the student submits a position paper of three paragraphs: (a) the thesis of the author, (b) author's reasoning for the thesis, (c) critique of the author's thesis and reasoning.

2. The length of the final essay corresponds approximately to the length of a conference paper (4 to 8 pages). The student can choose one of the two variants of the theme:

(a)An analysis of some aspect of Foucault's method together with an analysis of its possible or actual application in religious studies.

(b) An analysis of a part of the student's master theses' theme (or another theme of her/his interest) using Foucault's discourse analytical approach.

The course is also listed under the following terms Spring 2009, Autumn 2013, Autumn 2018.
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