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EorroR'sPnence l. The WordPanhesia Tne Mearrxc oF THE WoRD Frankness Truth Danger Criticism Duty Txe Evolurror or rxe Wono Rhetoric Politics Philosophy 2. Panhesia in Euripides Tnt PnoexrcnN WoMEN Htpeotwus Tne Beccuee Eæcrne lox Hermes'Prologue Apollo'sSilence lon's Role Greusa'sRole Onesres Pnoalemrrrzrre PlanrrsLa 3. Panhesia in the Crisis of Democratic Institutions 9 t1


13 15 17 19 20 20 22 23 25 28 30 31

Special thanks to Johanna Balusikova for design and to Sylvère Lotringer and Ben Meyers for editing and copy-editing O Gérard Aimé and Daniclle Bancilhon for the Foucault photos on the front cover and inside back cover, respectively. This work received support liom the Irrench Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Cultural Servicesofthe French Embassy in the United States. Serniotext(e) 2 5 7 1 ! q . 5 ' hS t r e e t l - o s A n g e l e s ,C a . 9 0 0 5 7 U S A e-rnail: forcignagent(û'earthlink.net 2001 O Semiotext(e) All rights reserved. P r i n t e d i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e so f A m e r i c a

36 38 40 44

57 71 75

4. Panhesia in the Care of the Self Socnlrrc Pannnesn Tx: Pnrcrrce oç Paannesu In Human Relationships Community life Publiclife Personarelationships I In Techniques Examination of Preliminary remarks Solitaryself-examination Self-diagnosis Self-testing Concluding Remarks Bibliography

89 91 l07 107

115 133 142 142 145

160 167 175

"My intention was not to deal with the problemof truth, but with the problem of the truth-teller,or of truth-telling as an activity:. . . who is able to tell the truth, about what, with and what consequences, with what relationsto power.. . . the questionof the importanceof telling the truth, ffiith knowing who is able to tell the truth, and knowing why we should tell the truth, we have the rootsof what we could call the 'critical' tradition in the West." Michel Foucault

Pnerlce EDrroR's
The following text was compiled from tape-recordingsmade of six lectures delivered,in English, by Michel Foucault at the University of California at Berkeley in the Fall Tèrm of 1983. The lectures were given as part of Foucault's seminar, entitled "Discourse and Tiuthr" devoted to the study of the Greek notion of parhesin or "frankness in speakingthe truth." Since Foucault did not write, correct, or edit any part of the text which follows, it lacks his imprimatur and does not reflect his own lecture notes. \(hat is given here constitutes only the notesofone ofhis auditors.Although the presenttext is primarily a verbatim transcription of the lectures,repetitive sentencesand phrases have been eliminated, responsesto questionshave beenincorporated,wheneverpossible,into the lectures themselves.more accessibletranslations of certain Greek texts have been substituted, and numerous sentences have been revised,all in the hope of producing a more readablesetofnotes.The division ofthe lectures the into sections, section headings,all footnotes,and a bibliography giving references footnoted material, also have been added. to The editor gratefully acknowledgeshis indebtednessto John Carvalho for providing information which enabledhim to audit Foucault's course.He also expresses gratitude to his Dougal Blyth for advice on various matters pertaining to the classical Greek texts Foucault discusses.In addition, he thanks Jacquelyn Tâylor for her help in locating some of Foucault'sreferences. JosephPearson
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The word panhesia [rappqoicr] appears for the first time in Greek literature in Euripides 1c.48Ç407 B.C.l, and occurs throughout the ancient Greek world of letters from the end of the Fifth Century B.C. But it can also still be found in the patristic texts written at the end of the Fourth and during the Fifth Century A.D.-dozens of times, for instance, in Jean Chrysostome[4.D. 345-407]. There are three forms of the word: the nominal form parrhesia;the verb formpcnhesiazomai Incrpprlotci(opar] (or betreg panhesiazesthai [no.pprlora(eç0ar]); and there is also the panhesia.rres word hû,ppl1oraocriç], which is not very frequent and cannot be found in the Classicaltexts. Rather,you find it period-in Plutarch and Lucian, for only in the Greco-Roman example.In a dialogueof Lucian, "The Dead Come to Life, or The Fisherman,"3 one of the charactersalso has the name Parrhesiadesncrpprloraôriç]. I Parrhesiais ordinarily translated into English by "free speech" (in French by franc-parler, and in German by Freimûthighei). Panhesiazomaior panhesiazesthai to useparis rhesia, and the panhesiastes the one who usesparîhesia,i.e., is the one who speaksthe truth. In the first part of today's seminar,I would like to give

l. FirstLecture: October l0 1983.
2. Cf. H. Liddell & R. Scott, "Ilappqotcr" in A Gteeh-English Lexicon, 1344; Pierre Miquel, "floppqoto." in Dictitnnaire de Spiitualité, Vol. 12, col. 260-261; and Heinrich Schlier, "Hctpprlorcr, Ilcrpprlotci(opar" in TheologicalDictionary of the New Tëstament, Vol. 5, 871-886. 3. Lucian, "The Dead Come to Life, or The Fisherman," Tians. A. M. Harmon inThe lVorhsof ucian,Vol.3, l-81. L

M i c h e lF o u c a u l t


a general aperçu about the meaning of the wordpaffhesio, aîd the evolution of this meaningthrough Greekand Roman culture. Frankness To begin with, what is the general meaning of the word parrhesia?Etymologically, panhesiazeslàal means "to say everything"-from pan ln&vl (everything) andrhema tbfrpcrl (that which is said). The one who usespanhesia, the panhesiastes, is someonewho sayseverything hea has in mind: he does not hide anything, but opens his heart and mind completely to other peoplethrough his discourse.Inpanhesia, speakeris the supposed give a completeand exactaccountofwhat he has to in mind so that the audienceis able to comprehendexactly what the speaker thinks. The word panhesia,then, refers to a type ofrelationship betweenthe speakerand what he says.For in panhesia, speakermakesit manifestly clear and obvious the that what he says is his ozuzopinion. And he does this by avoiding any kind of rhetorical form which would veil what he thinks. Instead, the panhesiartes uses rhe most direct words and forms of expressionhe can frnd. \Thereasrhetoric provides the speakerwith technical devicesto help him prevail upon the minds of his audience (regardless the rhetorician's of own opinion concerning what he says), in panhesia, the parrhesiastes on other people's minds by showing them as acts directly as possiblewhat he actually believes. If we distinguish betweenthe speakingsubfect(the subject of enunciation) and the grammaticalsubjectof the enounced,

we could say that there is also the subject of the enunciandum- which refersto the held belief or opinion of the speaker. ln panhesic the speakeremphasizesthe fact that he is both the subiect of the enunciation and the subject of the enunciandum-that he himself is the subject of the opinion to which he refers.The specific"speechactivity" ofthe parrhesiastic enunciation thus takes the form: "I am the one who thinks this and that." I use the phrase"speechactivity" rather than John Searle's"speech act" (or Austin's "performative utterance utterance")in order to distinguish the parrhesiastic and its commitments from the usual sorts of commitment which obtain betweensomeoneand what he or she says.For, aswe shall see,the commitment involved in panhesiais linked to a certain social situation) to a difference of status between the speaker and his audience, to the fact that the panhesiastes says something which is dangerous to himself and thus involves a risk, and so on. Truth There are tlg_qg:r of panhesia which we must distinguish. First, there is a pejorativesenseof the word not very far from "chatteriqgr" and which consistsin saying any- or everything one has in mind without qualification. This pejorative sense occurs in Plato,5for example,as a characterization the bad of democratic constitution where everyone has the right to addresshis fellow citizens and to tell them anything-even the most stupid or dangerousthings for the city. This pejorative meaning is also found more frequently in Christian literature where such "bad" parrhesiais opposed to silence as a

4. Responding to a student's question, Foucault indicated that the oppressedrole ofwomen in Greek society generally deprived them ofthe use of panhesia (along with aliens, slaves, and children). Hence the predominant use of the masculine pronoun throughout.

5. Plato, Republic 577b. Cf. also Phaedrus 240e & Laws 649b,671b.



discipline or as the requisite condition for the contemplarion of God.6As a verbal activity which reflects every movement of the heart and mind,pcnhesia tn this negative senseis obviously an obstacleto the contemplationof God. Most of the time, however, panhesia does not have this pejorativemeaning in the classicaltexts, but rather a positive one.Panhesi.azesthai means "to tell th(truth.l But does the panneswsrcs wnar ne lzlzEïEE]ft-o., s?y n;-r.), *.", r, parrhesiastes really true? To my mind, the says what is true Ëaozus that ir is true .he be€gsg-l!_is- really-+rue. The paffhesiastes not only sincere is and sayswhat is bis opinion, but his opinion is also the truth. Ilgsays what h{ËzazrI-Jlg[e true. The secondcharacteristic of panhesia, then, iÈ-tfi-at there is always an exact coincidence betweenbelief and truth. It would be interesting to compare Greek panhesla with the modern (Cartesian) conception of evidence. For since Descartes, the coincidence between belief and truth is obtained in a certain (mental) evidential experience. For the Greeks, however, the coincidence between belief and truth does not take place in a (mental) experience, but in a oerbal dctioity, namely, panhesia. It appears that parîhesin, in this can no longer occur in our modern epistemologGreek sense, ical framework. I should note that I never found any texts in ancient Greek culture where the panhesiastes seemsto have any doubts about his own possession the truth. And indeed,that is the of difference between the Cartesian problem and the parrhesias-

obtainsindubitably clearand tic attitude. For beforeDescartes distinct evidence,he is not certain that what he believesis, in however,there fact, true. In the Greek conceptionof panhesia, does not seem to be a problem about the acquisition of the by truth since such truth-having is guaranteed the possession of certain moral qlualities: when someone has certain moral qualities, then that is the proof that he has access truthto that the and vice versa.The "parrhesiasticgame" presupposes panhesiastes someonewho has the moral qualities which are is required, first, to know the truth, and, secondly,to convey such truth to others.T If there is a kind of *proof" of the sincerity of thepanhesiastes, ishis courage'Fhefaet that a speakersayssomething it dangerous-different from what the maiority believes-is If a strong indication that he is a panhesiastes. we raise the question of how we can know whether someoneis a truthteller,we raisetwo questions.First, how is it that we can know whether some particular individual is a truth-teller; and seccan ondly, how is it that the allegedpanhesiastes be certain that what he believesis, in fact, the truth. The hrst questionrecognizing someoneas a panhesiastes-was very important a was explicitone in Greco-Romansocietg and, aswe shall see) ly raised and discussedby Plutarch, Galen, and others. The second scepticalquestion, however, is a particularly modern one which, I believe,is foreign to the Greeks. Danger Someoneis said to usebanhesia and merits considerationas a

6.Cf.G.J.M. Bartelink, observations rcppqoradans litsur "Quelques la
térature paléo-chrétienne," in Graecitaset latinitas Christianorum pimaeoa, Supplement IlI,,+4-55 [napplotcr au sens péioratifl. 7. Cf. Foucault interview, "On the Genealogy of Ethics: An Overview of Vork in Progress," in H. L. Dreyfus & P Rabinow, Michel Fbucault,252.


F E A R L E s sS P E E c H


parîhesiastes ifthere is a risk or danger for him in telling only the truth. For instance, from the ancient Greek perspective)a grammar teacher may tell the ûuth to the children that he is and indeed may haveno doubt that what he teaches teaches, and truth, betweenbelief true. But in spite of this coincidence Howevet, when a philosopher addresshe is not à par-hesiastes. es himself to a sovereign' to a tyrant, and tells him that his tyranny is disturbing and unpleasant because tyranny is incompatible with justice, then the philosopher speaks the truth, believes he is speaking the truth, and, more than that, also takesa rlsÊ(since the tyrant may becomeangry,may punish him, may exile him, may kill him). And rhat was exactly Plato's situation with Dionysius in Syracuse-concerning which there are very interesting referencesin Plato's Seventh Letter, and alsoiaThe Life of Dion by Plutarch. I hopewe shall study these texts later. is So you see)thepanhesiastes someonewho takesa risk' Of , \ùflhen, example, for I .or'rrr., this risk is not alwaysa risk of life. you seea friend doing something wrong and you risk incurring his anger by telling him he is wrong, you are acting as a panhcyou do not risk your life, but you may hun In siostes. such a case, him by your remarks, and your liiendship may consequently suffer for it. It in a political debate,âb orator risks losing his popularity becausehis opinions are contrary to the maiority's opinion, or his opinions may usher in a political scandal, he Panhesia,then, is linked to courage in the face vsesparîhzsioof danger: it demandsthe courageto speakthe truth in spite of some danger.And in its extreme form, telling the truth takes place in the "game" of life or death. must take a risk in speaking It is becausethe parrhesiastes the truth that the king or tyrant generally cannot usepatthesia; for fu risks nothing.

\ù[hen you accept the parrhesiasticgame in which Your,\ own life is exposed,you are taking up a specific ::3.:i:"tl1l :" / in'fl yourself: you risk aeàîEÏd-îêilînîifrttrTn$édtlôriéposing course' I th. ,e.urity of a life where the truth goesunspoken'Of I from the other, and thereby requirest the threat of death comes primarily a relationship to the Other. But the panhesiastes himself as a chooses specificrelationship to himself: [qf*p 1f than asa living being who is falseto himselt' ,l a truIh:teltrer-rather Griticism If, during a ûial, you saysomething which can be usedagainst you you, you may not be usingporrftesiain spite of the fact that you are are sincere, that you believe what you say is true, and For in panhe'siathe danendangering yourself in so speaking' ger always comes from the fact that the said truth is capableof hurting or angering the interlocutor'Panhesia is thus always a "game" between the one who speaksthe truth and the interlocutor. The panhesiainvolved, for example,may be the advice he that the interlocutor should behave in a certain wây, or that so on' is wrong in what he thinks' or in the way he acts' and himOr thepanheslamay be a confessionof what the speaker this confessionto someone self has done insofar as he makes power over him' and is able to censureor punwho exercises parish him for what he has done. So you see)the function of rhesia isnot ro demonsrrate rhe trurh ro somein-Eil66t-1râs th€ the this is what vou is whit you do and gfhis *Sgg-lt it what you should not do or should not î"i-î6"t tfilf.; you think." "This is the way you behave,but that is the way what I havedone,and waswrong in ought to behave.""This is so doing." Panhesia is a form of criticism' either towards another or towardsoneself,but alwaysin a situation where the



F E A R L E s sS P E E C H

speakeror confessor in a position ofinferiority with respect is to the interlocutor. The parthesia.stss always less powerful is than the one with whom he speaks. The panhesiacomesfrom "belowr" as it were, and is directed towards "above." This is why an ancient Greek would not say that a teacheror father who criticizes a child usespanhesia. But when a philosopher criticizes a tyrant, when a citizen criticizes the majority, when a pupil criticizes his teacher,then such speakers may be using panhesia. parrheThis is not to imply, however, thar anyonecaû rrse sia. For although there is a text in Euripides where a servant usespanhesia,8most of the time the use of panhesia requires his that the paîhesiastes know his own genealogy, own status; i.e., usually one must lirst be a mâle citizen to speakthe truth Indeed, someonewho is deprived of panhes'ia as a panhesiastes. is in the samesituation as a slaveto the extent that he cannot take part in the political life of the city, nor play the "parrhesiasticgame."In "democraticparrhesia"-yfig1s one speaks to the assembly, ekhlesia-one must be a citizen; in fact, one the must be one of the àestamong the citizens, possessing those specificpersonal,moral, and social qualities which grant one the privilege to speak. risks his privilege to speakfreely However, the panhesiasrer when he discloses truth which threatensthe majority. For it a were wasa well-known iuridical situationthat Athenian leaders exiled only because they proposed something which was the thought opposedby the majority,or evenbecause assembly limited its own freethat the stronginfluenceof certainleaders dom. And so the assemblywas, in this manner) "protected"

againstthe truth. That, then, is the institutional background of "democraticp anhesia"-which must be distinguished from that "monarchic panhesia" where an advisor gives the sovereign honest and helpful advice. Duty The last characteristic of panhesia is this: in4anhesia,telling the-truth_lggg3lde d as a duty. The orator who speaksthe truth to those who cannot aôèë!Ï-his truth' for instance,and who may be exiled, or punished in some way,is free to keep silent. No one forces him to speak,but he feels that it is his duty to do so. \fhen, on the other hand, someoneis compelledto tell the truih (as, for example, under duress of torturq A criminal who is iudges to confesshis crime does not usepanhehis sia. But if he voluntarily confesses crime to someoneelse outol-asènie-oTrn--or-al@"hesiastic act. To criticize a friend or a sovereign is an acr ofpar as it is a duty to help a friend who does not recffiriisofar ognize his wrongdoing, or insofar as it is a duty towards the city to help the king to better himself as a sovereign.Panhesia is thus related to freedom and to duty. To summarize the foregoing, panhesw is a kind of verbal activity where the speaker has a specific relation to truth through frankness, a certain relationship to his own life through danger, a certain type of relation to himself or other people through criticism (self-criticism or criticism of other people), and a specific relation to moral law through freedom and duty. More precisely,panhesiais a verbal activity in which his personal relationship to truth' and a speaker expresses he risks his life because recognizestruth-telling as a duty to improve or help other people(aswell as himself). In panhesia,

8. Euripides, The Bacchae,666ff.


l \ 4 i c h eF o u c a u l t l


the speakeruseshis f*9dqA_g!djb9gçq{r""k"ess i"$!e"d of _-----.:--:persuasion.truth instead of falsehoodor silence.the ûk of a."ttr i"st.aa of Ut fl4ttery, 4lapathy. That then, quite generally,is the positive meaning of the word parrhesiain most of the Greek texts where it occurs from the Fifth Century B.C. to the Fifth Century A.D.

the Ph.aedrus-where, as you know, the main problem is not about the nature of the opposition between speechand writing which speaksthe but concernsthe difference between the logos which is not capable of such truth-telling. ûuth and ttre logos This opposition between panhesia and rhetoric, which is so clear-cutin the Fourth Century B.C. throughout Plalo's writings, will last for centuries in the philosophical tradition. In for Seneca, example,one hnds the idea that perso4g! dons are the best vehicle for frank speaking and truth-telling with the insofar as one can dispense,in such conversations, need for rhetorical devicesand ornamentation. And even during the SecondCentury A.D. the cultural opposition between rhetoric and philosophy is still very clear and important. However,one can also find some signs of the incorporation of panhcsiawithin the field of rhetoric in the work of rhetoricians at the beginning of the Empire. In Quintilliarls Institutn for example (Book IX, Chapter II), Quintillian Otatoriato explains that somerhetorical figures are specificaltyâffiËâa for intensifuing the emotions of the audience;and such technical figures he calls by the name exclamatb (exclamation).Relaredto these exclamations is a kind of natural exclamation which' Quintillian notes,is not "simulated or artfully designed."This type of natural exclamation he calls "free speech3' llibera oratbne) which, he tells us, was called "license" fli'centiaf by Cornificius, and "parhesia" by the Greeks. Pqffhesia is thus a sort of "figure" among rhetorical hgures, bùtfiîE-ihl*châr: iË"î ii.ii ùittro"tâ"v âËïiË.i"Ë. i, is completely nat".iêilstiî, ural. Panhesia is the zero degree of those rhetorical figures which intensify the emotionsof the audience.

Evolurrot oF THE Wono
Now what I would like to do in this seminar is nor to study and analyze all the dimensions and features oï parrhesia,but rather to show and to emphasize someaspects the evolution of parrhesiastic game in ancient culture (from the Fifth of the Century B.C.) to the beginnings of Christianity. And I think that we can analyze this evolution from three points of view. Rhetoric The first concernsthe relationship o1. panhe.sia rhetoricto a relationship which is problematic even in Euripides. In !bÈ Socratic-Platonic tradition, parhesia and rhetoric stand in jlpottttont and thrs opposltlon appeârsverv clearlv tgg in the Gorgias,for example, where the word panhesia occurs.e The continuous long speech is a rhetorical or sophistical device,whereasthe dialogue through questionsand answers is typical lor panhesia;i.e., dialogue is a maior technique for playing the parrhesiasticgame. The opposition ofpanhesia and rhetoric also runs through

9. Plato, Gorgias 461e, 487a--e, 49Ie

of Vol. Institutio Chatoia Quintillian, 3' 389-439. 10.Quintillian,The

lvlichel Foucault



Politics The secondimportant aspectof the evolution of panhesiais related to the political field.rt As it appears in Euripides' plays and also in the texts of the Fourth Century 8.C., parrhesiais an essential characteristic of AiEèniân ilêrÀôêiaôy. ôl*côUrse, we srillhâvé to investigâTêrfiErdle <ifpaikeiia in the Athenian constitution. But we can say quite generally that panhesid was a guideline for democracy as well as an ethical and personal attitude characteristic of the good citizen. Athenian democracy was defined very explicitly as a constitution (politeia)in which people enloyed demokratia, ûçgo1jq(the equal righl gf speech), xlotlSgiS Ghe equal participation of all citizens in the exercise of power), and p*rrhesia. which is a requisite for public speech,takes Panhe.sia, place between citizens as individuals, and also between citizens construed as an assembly.Moreover, the agoro is the place where panhesiaappears. During the Hellenistic period this political meaning changeswith the rise of the Hellenic monarchies.Panhesia now becomescentered in the relationrhip b.t*.en the sovereign and his advisors or court men. In the monarchic constitution of the state, it is the advisor's duty to usepanhesia to help the king with his decisions,and to prevent him from abusing his power. Panhesiais necessary and useful both for the king and for the people under his rule. The sovereigu himself is not a panhesiastes, a touchstone of the good but 11.Cl PierreMiquel,"flappqorcr"in Dictionnaire Spiitualité, I2, de Vol.
col. 260-261;, Erik Peterson, "Zur Bedeutungsgeschichte von "flopprloia" in ReinholdSeeberg Festschifi,Bd. l, 283-288; Giuseppe Scarpat, Parthesia. Storin del termine dellesuetraduzioniin Latino,29ff; e Heinrich Schlier,"ilcrpp1orcr, noppqoro(opcrf' in Theohgical Dictionary of the Nez:u Tèstament 5. 871-873. Vol.

ruler is his ability to play çhe parrhesiastic g;';re,l Thus, a good king acceptseverything that a genuiîe pdfthesiastes tells him, even if it turns out to be unpleasant for him to hear criticisms of his decisions. sovereignshows himself A to be a tyrant if he disregardshis honest advisors,or punishes them for what they have said. The portrayal of a sovereign by most Greek historians takes into account the way he behavestowards his advisors-as if such behavior were an index of his ability to hear the panhesiastes. There is also a third categoryof playersin the monarchic game, viz., the silent majority: the people in parrhesiastic general who are not present at the exchangesbetween the king and his advisors,but to whom, and on behalf of whom, the advisors refer when offering advice to the king. T!f, flg..: where panhelia appears in the context of monarchic rule is the king's court, and no longer the ogora. Philosophy Finally, panhesla's evolution can be tracedthrough its relation to the field of philosophy-regarded as an art of lile (techne tou biou). In the writings ofPlato, Socrates appears the role ofthe in panhesiastes. Although the word parrhesla appearsseveraltimes in Plato, he never uses the word parhesiastes-a word which only appears later as part of the Greek vocabulary. And yet the role of Socraies typically a parrhesiastic is one, for he constantly confronts Athenians in the street and) as noted in the points out the truth to them, bidding them to carefor Apologt,t2 wisdom, truth, and the perfection of their souls. And in the

12. Plato, Apolog 29d-e.



Alcibiades Majm, aswell, Socrates assumes parrhesiasticrole in a the dialogue.For whereasAlcibiades' friends and lovers all flatter him in their attempt to obtain his favors, Socrates risks provoking Alcibiades'angerwhen he leadshim to this idea: that beforeAlcibiades will be able to accomplish what he is so seron achieving, viz, to becamethe frrst among the Athenians to rule Athens and become more powerful than the King of Persia, before he will be able to take care of Athens, he must hrst learn to take care of himself. Philosophical panhesiais thus associated with the theme of the caî-e onésëIf(zptrwfulæntton).r3 o--f By the dme of thë Epicureans;pmrhesià\ affinity with the careof oneself developedto the point wherepanhesiaitself was primarily regarded as a techneof spiritual guidance for the "education of the soul." Philodemus [c. lt0-35 B.C.], for example(who, with Lucretius [c. 99-55 B.C.], was one of the most significant Epicurean writers during the First Century B.C.),wrote a book aboutpanhesra [tlepjgrpprlô1aç]r4 which concernstechnical pr".ti..r *.ful î#Ë".hiù ùa n.tping dnï-anottrerin-the Epietrèâtf tonimuffiji. "Vé itratt examine s-ôifêof thôê parrhesiastictechniquesas they developedin, for example,the Stoic philosophiesof Epictetus, Seneca, and others.

Parrhesia Euripides" in

*r.n., Foucault,I.e Soucidesoi,58ff. * 14.Philodemus, flepi napprlôroç Ed. A. Olivieri. Leipzig,l9l4

B a B L I O T H E E KH 0 ( , i r .r r . : Y?o' VII.ISBEGFFR i-fi .i, (_t i, . Ktrd Morgetr,tein 2 I - 3.ic0 LÛi-,i',ùn


Today I would like to begin analyzing the first occurrencesof the word panhesit in Greek literature. Specifically, I want to examine the use of the word in six tragediesof Euripides: Phoenitian lYomenl Hippolytus; The Bacchae; Electra; Ion; and Orcstes. In the first four plays, panhesra does not constitute an important topic or notif; but the word itself generally occurs within a precisecontext which aids our understanding of its meaning. In the last two plays-Ion and Orcstes-panhesia does assumea very important role. Indeed, I think that -Ioz is since it pursues entirely devoted to the problem of parrhesia question: who has the right, the duty, and the courageto the problem in.Ion is raisedin speakthe truth? This parrhesiastic the framework of the relations between the gods and human beings. ln Orestes-which was written ten years later, and thereforeis one of Euripides' last plays-therole of panhesiais not nearly as significant. And yet the play still contains a parrhesiastic scene which warrants attention insofar as it is directly relatedto political issuesthat the Athenianswere then raising. Here, in this parrhesiasticscene) there is a transition regarding the question of patthesia as it occurs in the context of human institutions. Specifically panhesiais seen as both a political and a philosophical issue. Today,then, I shall first try to say something about the occurrencesof the word panhesin in the first four plays mentioned in order to throw some more light on the meaning of the word. And then I shall attempt a global analysisof lon as play where we seehuman beings takthe decisiveparrhesiastic ing upon themselves role of truth-tellerc-x lsls which the the gods are no longer able to assume.
15. Second Lecture: 3l October 1983.


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Wouen [c.4lr-4o9 B.C.] Tue PnoenlctAN
Consider, first, The Phoenician tilomen. The major theme of this play concerns the fight between Oedipus' two sons: Eteoclesand Polyneices. Recall that after Oedipus' fall, in order to avoid their father's curse that they should divide his inheritance "by sharpenedsteel," Eteoclesand Polyneicesmake a pact to rule over Thebes alternately,year by year,with Eteocles(who was older) reigning first. But after his initial year of reign, Eteoclesrefusesto hand over the crown and yield power to tyranny, and Eteoclesthus represents his brother, Polyneices. Polyneices-who lives in exile-represents the democratic regime. Seeking his share of his father's crown, Polyneices returns with an army of Argives in order to overthrow Eteoclesand lay siegeto the city of Thebes. It is in the hope of avoiding this confrontation that Jocasta-the mother of Polyneicesand Eteocles,and the wife and mother of Oedipuspersuades her two sons to meet in a truce. \Ûhen Polyneices about his sufasksPolyneices arrivesfor this meeting,Jocasta fering during the time he was exiled from Thebes."Is it really hard to be exiled?" asksJocasta.And Polyneicesanswers) askswhy exile is so than anything." And when Jocasta "\ù?orse hard, Polyneicesreplies that it is becauseone cannot enioy panhesia: JOCASTA:This aboveall I long to know:What is an exile's life? Is it great miserY? worsein reality than in POLYNEICES:The greâtest; report. \ù7hat chiefly galls JOCASTA: Worse in what way? an exile'sheart?

POLYNEICES: The worst is this: right of free speech doesnot exist. pv pèv pê1totov, our é1errapp4orav.] JOCASTA: That's a slave'slife-to be forbidden ro speakone'smind. POLYNEICES: One has ro endure the idiocv of those who rule. JOCASTA: To join fools in their foolishness-rhat makesone sick. POLYNEICES:One finds it paysro deny narureand be a slave.16 As you can see from these few lines, panhesia is linked, frrst of all, to Polyneices'socialstatus.For if you are nor a regular citizen in the city, ifyou are exiled, then you cannor use panhesia.That is quite obvious. Bur somerhing else is also implied, viz., rhat if you do nor have the right of free speech, you are unable to exercise any kind ofpower, and thus you are in the samesituation as a slave.Further: if such citizens cannot use paîhesia, they cannot opposea ruler's power. And without the right of criticism, the power exercised a soverby eign is without limitation. Such power without limitation is characterized Jocasta "joining fools in their foolishness.', by as For power without limitation is directly related to madness. The man who exercisespower i. Vt_r9only insofar as there exists someonewho can usepanhesla to criticize him, thereby nutfng_9omelimit to his power, to his command.

16. Euripides, The Phoenician lf,/omen. Trans. philip Vellacott, lines 3gG394.


Franrrss Sprecr

Hrppotwus [az8 B.C.]
The second passagefrom Euripides I want to quote comes from Hippolyrzs. As you know, the play is about Phaedra'slove for Hippolytus. And the passageconcerning panhesia occurs just after Phaedra'sconfession: when Phaedra,early on in the play, confessesher love for Hippolytus to her nurse (without, however, actually saying his name). But the word panhesia but doesnot concernthis confession, refersto somethingquite different. For iust after her confession of her love for Hippolytus, Phaedra speaks of those noble and high-born women from royal households who first brought shame upon their own family, upon their husband and children, by committing adultery with other men. And Phaedra says she does not want to do the same since she wants her sons to live in Athens, proud of their mother, and exercising panhesia. And she claims that if a man is consciousof a stain in his familv, he becomesa slave: PHAEDRA: I will never be known to bring dishonour on my husband or my children. I want my two sons to go back and live in gloriousAthens, hold their headshigh there, and speak their minds there like free men [bÀeriOepottcrppqotg OdÀÀovteç], honored for their mother's name.One thing can make the most bold-spirited man a slave:to know the secretof a parent's shameful
act. l7

you are awareof dishonor in your family, then you are because enslaved. Also, citizenship by itself doesnot appearto be sufficient to obtain and guarantee the exerciseof free speech. Honor, a good reputation for oneselfand one's family, is also neededbefore one can freely addressthe people of the city. Panhesiathus requires both moral and social qualifications which come from a noble birth and a respectfulreputation.

In The Bacchaethere is a very short passage, transitional a moment, where the word appears. One of Penthss5'ss1ysn15a herdsman [Boorôç] and messenger to [à.yyeÀoçl the kinghas come to report about the confusion and disorder the Maenadsare generating in the community, and the fantastic deedsthey are committing. But, as you know, it is an old tradition that messengers who bring glad tidings are rewarded for the news they convey)whereasthose who bring bad news are exposedto punishment. And so the king's servant is very reluctant to deliver his ill tidings ro Penrheus. But he asksthe king whether he may usepanhesiaand tell him everything he knows, for he fears the king's wrath. And Pentheuspromises that he will not get inro trouble so long as he speaks the trurh: HERDSMAN: I have seen rhe holy Bacchae,who like a flight of spears went streaming bare-limbed, frantic,out of the city gate.I havecomewirh the intention of telling you, my lord, and the city, of their strangeand terrible doings-things beyondall wonder.But first I would learn whether I may speakfreely [ncrpprlô'tcr Qpuôrrl]of what is going on there,or if I should trim my words. I fear your

In this text we see,once again, a connection between the lack of panhesin and slavery. For if you cannot speak freely lines420-425. lans. Philip Vellacott, 17.Euripides,flrppolyas.

M i c h e lF o u c a u l t

l r aRLEss SpEEcH

my hastiness, lord, your anger'your too potent royalty. PENTHEUS: From me fear nothing. Say all that you have to say; anger should not grow hot againstthe innocent.The more dreadful your story of theseBacchicrites, the heavierpunishmentI will inflict upon this man who enticedour women to their evil ways.r8 These lines are interesting because they show a case the where the pa nhesiastes, one who speaksthe truth, is not an man, but a servantto the king--{ne who cannot entirely free usepanhesia if the king is not wise enough to enter into the game and grant him permission to speakopenly' parrhesiastic For if the king lacks self-mastery' if he is carried away by his passionsand gets mad at the messenger'then he doesnot hear the truth, and will also be a bad ruler for the city' But Pentheus,as a wise king, offers his servant what we can call a "parrhesiasticcontract." The "parrhesiastig cqntract"-which became relatively important in the political life of rulers in the Greco-Roman world-consists in the following' The sovereign,the one who himself to the one has power but lacks the truth, addresses whg bas.thetruth but lackspower,and tells him: if you tell me the truthr.no matter what this truth turns out to be, you won't be punished; and those who are responsiblefor any iniustices will be punished, but not those who speak the trulh about sriô[-]riiustices. This idea of the "parrhesiastic contract" becameassociatedwith panhesiaas a special privilege granted to the best and most honest citizens of the city. Of course,the is parrhesiastic contract betweenPentheusand his messenger
Philip Vellacott,lines 66't-676' i. Eorioid"., TheBacchae.Tians.

only a moral obligation since it lacks all institutional foundation As the king's servant,the messenger still quite vulneris able, and still takes a risk in speaking. But, although he is courageous, is also not reckless,and is cautious about the he consequences what he might say.The .,contract" is intendof ed to limit the risk he takesin speaking.

In Electra the word panhesia occurs in the confrontâtion between Electra and her mother, Clytemnestra. I do not need to remind you of this famous story, but only to indicate that prior to the moment in the play when the word appears, Oresteshas just killed the tyrant Aegisthus-Clytemnestra,s lover and co-murderer (with Clytemnestra) of Agamemnon (Clytemnestra'shusband and father ro Oresresand Electra). But right before Clytemnestra appears on the scene, Orestes hides himself and Aegisthus' body. So when Clytemnnestra makesher enûy, she is not awareof what has just transpired, i.e., she does not know that Aegisthus has iust been killed. And her entry is very beautiful and solemn,for she is riding in a royal chariot surroundedby the most beautiful of the captive maidens of Tioy, all of whom are now her slaves.And Electra, who is there when her mother arrives, also behaveslike a slave in order to hide the fact that rhe moment of revenge for her father's death is ar hand. She is also there to insult Clytemnestra, and to remind her of her crime. This dramatic scenegives way to a confrontation between the two. A discussion begins, and we have two parallel speeches, both equally long (forty lines), the firsr one by Clltemnestra, and the second by Electra.


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Clytemnestra'sspeechbegins with the words "Àé(or ôé" to "I will speak"U. 1013].And sheproceeds tell the truth) confessing that she killed Agamemnon as a punishment for the sacrificial death of her daughter, Iphigeneia. Following this speech,Electra replies, beginning with the symmetrical formulation "Àé1ncrp'6iv"-<(1[g1, will speak"U. 1060].In spite I of this symmetry, however, there is a very clear difference betweenthe two. For at the end of her speech,Clytemnestra Electra directly and says to her, "Use your panhesia addresses to prove that I was wrong to kill your father": CLYTEMNESTRA: ...I killed him. I took the only way \Well,what open to me-turned for help to his enemies. could I do? None of your father's friends would have helpedme murder him. So if you'reanxiousto refuteme, do it now; speak freely-$gV-ti-0eçnappno[g]j_plovq youJ

ELECTRA: Do you mean you'll listen first, and get your own back afterwards? CLYTEMNESTRA: No, nol you're free to say what your heart wants to say. ELECTRA: I'll sayit, then. This is where I'll begin...2r And Electra proceedsto speakopenly,blaming her mother for what she has done. There is another asymmetricalaspectbetweenthesetwo discourses which concerns the difference in status of the two speakers.For Clytemnestra is the queen, and does not use or require panhesia to plead for her own defense in killing Agamemnon. But Electra-who is in the situation of a slave, who plays the role of a slavein this scene,who can no longer live in her father's house under her father's protection, and who addresses mother just as a servantwould addressthe her queen*Electra needs the right of pathesia. And so another parrhesiasticcontract is drawn between Clytemnestraand Electra: Clytemnestrapromisesshe will not punish Electra for her franknessjust asPentheuspromisedhis messenger in The Bacchae. But in Electra, the parrhesiastic contract is subverted. It is not subverted by Clytemnestra (who, as the queen,still has the power to punish Electra); it is subverted by Electra herself. Electra asks her mother to promise her that shewill not be punishedfor speakingfrankly, and Clytemnestramakessuch a promisewithout knowing that she,Clytemnestraherself,will be punishedfor her confession. For, a few minutes later, she is subsequentlykilled by her children, Orestes and Electra. Thus the parrhesiastic contract is subverted: the one who was granted the privilege of panhesia 21. Ibid.. lines1058-1060.

fa.l.l.gl'' aîË-iîî il Jl fied.'' de
And, after the Chorus speaks, Electra replies,"Do not forget your latest words, mother. You gaveme parrhesiatowards you": ELECTRA: Mother, remember what you said just now. You promisedthat I might statemy opinion freely without fear fôrôoôocrnpèç oé por ncrppqorcrv].r(' And Clytemnestra answers: "I said so, daughter, and I meant it" [.1057]. But Electra is still wary and cautious,for shewonderswhether her mother will listen to her only to hurt her afterwards:
19. Euripides, Electra. Trans. Philip Vellacott, lines 1046-1050.

rbid.. 1055-1056. 20.



is not harmed, but the one who granted the right of punhesia is-and by the very person who, in the inferior position, was a The parrhesiastic contractbecomes subasking f.orpanhesia. versive trap for Clltemnestra.

lor [c.4r8-4r7 B.C.]
'We turn now to lon, a parrhesiastic play. The mythological framework of the play involves the legendary founding of Athens. According to Attic myth, Erectheuswas the first king of Athens-born a son of Earth and returning to Earth in death. Erectheus thus personifies that of which the Athenians were so proud, viz., their autochthony: that they literally were sprung from Athenian In soil.22 418 B.C.,about the time when this play was written, such mythological reference had political meaning. For Euripides wanted to remind his audiencethat the Athenians are native to Athenian soil; but through the character of Xuthus (husband to Erectheus' daughter Creusa,and a foreigner to Athens since he comesfrom Phthia), Euripides also wantedto indicate to his audiencethat the Athenians are relatand ed, through this marriage,to the peopleof the Peloponese, specificallyto Achaia-named from one of the sonsof Xuthus and Creusa: Achaeus. For Euripides' account of the panHellenic nature of Athenian genealogymakes Ion the son of Apollo and Creusa (daughter to Athens' ancient king Erectheus).Creusa later marries Xuthus (who was an ally of the Athenians in their war against the Euboeans[1. 58-62]).




ïwo sons are born from this marriage: Dorus and Achaeus[1. 15901.Ion was said to be the founder of the Ionic people; Dorus, the founder of the Dorians; and Achaeus,the founder ofthe Achaeans. Thus all ofthe ancestors ofthe Greek raceare depictedas descended from the royal houseofAthens.2l Euripides' referenceto Creusa's relationship with Apollo, as well as his placemenrof the play's setting at the Tèmple of Apollo at Delphi, is meant to exhibit the close relationship between Athens and Phoebus Apollo-the pan-Hellenic god of the Delphic sanctuary.For at the historical moment of the play's production in ancient Greece, Athens was rrying to forge a pan-Hellenic coalition against Sparta.Rivalry existed between Athens and Delphi since the Delphic priesrs were primarily on the side of rhe Spartans. Bur, to pur Arhens in the favorableposition of leader of the Hellenic world, Euripides wished to emphasize the relations of mutual parenthood betweenthe two cities. These my'thologicalgenealogies, then, are meant, in part, to fustify Athens' imperialistic politics towards other Greek cities at a time when Athenian leaders still thought an Athenian Empire was possible. I shall not focus on the political and mythological aspects of the play, but on the theme of the shift of the placeof rrurh's disclosurefrom Delphi to Athens. As you know, the oracle at Delphi was supposedto be the place in Greecewhere human beings were told the truth by the gods through the urterances of the Pythia. But in this play,we seea very explicir shift from

2J7b. 22. Cf. Pfato, Menexenus

23. On the political meaning of lon, A. S. Owen writes: "Its obiect is to give reasons for the Athenian Empire to hold together and to make the Dorian states of the Peloponese feel that the distant past might justify them in alliance with Athens" ["Introduction" to Euripides,Ion. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1957; xxiil.


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the oracular truth at Delphi to Athens: Athens becomesthe place where truth now appears.And, as a part of this shift, truth is no longer disclosedby the gods to human beings (as at Delphi), but is disclosedto human beings ày human beings through Athenian panhesia. Euripides'Ion is a play praising Athenian autochtony, and affirming Athens'blood-affinity with most other Greekstatesl but it is primarily a story of the movement of truth-telling from Delphi to Athens, from PhoebusApollo to the Athenian citizen.And that is the reasonwhy I think the play is the story of panhesia:the decisive Greek parrhesiastic play. Now I would like to give the following schematicaperçu of the play: SILENCE Delphi Apollo Ion \ùûeshall see that Apollo keeps silent throughout the dramal that Xuthus is deceived the god, but is alsoa deceivby er. And we shall also seehow Creusaand Ion both speakthe truth againstApollo's silence,for only they are connectedto the Athenian earth which endows them with panhesia. Hermes'Prologue I would first like to briefly recount the events,given in Hermes' prologue,which have taken placebefore the play begins. After the death of Erectheus' other children (Cecrops, Orithyia, and Procris), Creusais the only surviving offspring of the Athenian dynasty.One day,as a young girl, while pickDECEPTION TRUTH Athens (Athene) Foreign Countries Erectheus Xuthus Creusa

ing yellow flowers by the Long Rocks,Apollo rapesor seduces her [@potç l.l0]. ls it a rape or a seducrion? For the Greeks, the difference is not as crucial as it is for us. Clearly,when someonerapes a woman) a girl, or a boy, he usesphysical violence; whereas when someoneseduces another, he useswords, his ability to speak,his superior status, and so on. For the Greeks, using one's psychological,social, or intellectual abilities to seduce another person is not so different from using physical violence. Indeed, from the perspectiveof the law, seduction was considered more criminal than rape. For when someoneis raped, it is against his or her will; but when someone is seduced, then that constitutes the proof that at a specific moment, the seducedindividual chosero be unfaithful to his or her wife or husband, or parents,or family. Seduction was considered more of an attackagainsta spouse's power,or a family's power,since the one who was seduced choseto act against the wishesof his or her spouse, parents,or family.2a In any case,Creusa is raped or seducedby Apollo, and pregnant.And when sheis about to give birth, she shebecames returns to the place where she was led by Apollo, viz., a cave beneath Athens' acropolis-beneath the Mount of Pallas under the centerof the Athenian city. And here she hides herself until, all alone, she gives birth to a son [1. 949]. Bur because she does not want her father, Erectheus,to find out about the child (for she was ashamedof what happened),she
24. K. J. Dover writes: "To seduce a woman of citizen status was more culpable than to rape her, not only because rape was presumed to be unpremeditated but becauseseduction involved the capture of her affection and loyalty; it was the degree ofoffense against the man to whom she belonged, not her own feelings, which mattered" ["Classical Greek Attitudes to Sexual Behavior." 621.



Apollo then sends it, exposes leaving the child to wild beasts. his brother, Hermes,to bring the child, his cradleand clothes, to the temple at Delphi. And the boy is raised as a servantof the god in the sanctuary;and he is regardedas a foundling. For no one in Delphi (exceptApollo himself) knows who he is or where he comesfrom; and Ion himself doesnot know. Ion on thus appears, the schemaI outlined, betweenDelphi and Athens, Apollo and Creusa.For he is the son of Apollo and Creusa,and was born in Athens but lives his life in Delphi' In Athens, Creusadoesnot know whateverbecameofher child; and she wonders whether it is dead or alive. Later she immensely marries Xuthus, a foreigner whose alien presence of Athenian autochtony-which is the continuity complicates why it is so important for Creusato have an heir with Xuthus' However, after their marriage, Xuthus and Creusa are unable to haveany children. At the end of the play,the birth of Dorus and Achaeus are promised to them by Apollo; but at the beginning of the play they remain childless,eventhough they needchildren to endow Athens with dynasticcondesparately tinuity. And so both of them come to Delphi to ask Apollo if they shall ever have children. And so the play begins. Apollo's Silence But, of course, Creusa and Xuthus do not have exactly the samequestion to ask the god Apollo. Xuthus'question is very clear and simple: "I've never had children. Shall I have any with Creusa?" Creusa, however, has another question to ask. She must know whether she will ever have children with Xuthus. But she also wishesto ask: "\Ûith you, Apollo' I had a child. And I need to know now whether he is still living or not. \Ûhat, Apollo, has becomeofour son?" Apollo's temple, the oracleat Delphi, was the placewhere

the truth was told by the godsto any mortals who cameto consult it. Both Xuthus and Creusaarrive together in front of the temple door and, of course,the first person they meet is IonApollo's servantand son to Creusa.But naturally Creusadoes not recognize her son, nor does Ion recognize his mother. They are strângersto one another,just as Oedipus and Jocasta were initially in Sophocles'Oedipusthe King. Remember that Oedipus was also saved from death in spite of the will of his mother. And he, roo, was unable to recognizehis real father and mother.The structure of lozt plot is somewhatsimilar ro the Oedipus-story.But the dynamics of truth in the two plays are exactly reversed.For in Oedipusthe Kizg PhoebusApollo speaksthe truth from the very beginning, truthfully foretelling what will happen. And human beingsare the oneswho continually hide from or avoid seeing the truth, trying to escape destiny foretold by the god. But the in the end, through the signs Apollo has given them, Oedipus and Jocastadiscover the truth in spite of themselves.In the present play, human beings are trying to discover the truth: Ion wants to know who he is and where he comesfroml Creusa wants to know the fate of her son. Yet it is Apollo who voluntarily concealsthe truth. The Oedipal problem of truth is " resolvedby showing how mortals, in spite of their own blindness, will seethe light of truth which is spokenby the god, and which they do not wish to see.TheIonic problem of truth is * resolvedby showing how human beings,in spite of the silence of Apollo, will discover the truth they are so eager to know. The theme of god's silence prevails throughout lon. It appearsat the beginning of the tragedywhen Creusaencounters Ion. Creusais still ashamedof what happenedto her, so she speaksto Ion as if she had come to consult the oracle for her "friend." Shethen tells him part of her own story,attribut-


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ing ir to her allegedfriend, and asks him whether he thinks Apollo will give her friend an answer to her questions. As a good servantto the god, Ion tells her that Apollo will not give an answer.For if he hasdone what Creusa's friend claims. then he will be too ashamed: ION: ...is Apollo to reveal what he intendsshouldremain a mystery ? CREUSA: Surely his oracle is open for every Greek to question? you must respect lèelION: No. His honoris involved; his ings. CREUSA: What of his victim's feelines? What doesthis involve for her? ION: There is no one who will ask this questionfor you. Supposeit were proved in Apollo's own temple that he had behavedso badly,he would be justified in making your interpreter sufferfor it. My lady,let the matter drop. \7e must not accuse Apollo in his own court.That is what our folly would amount to, if we try to force a reluctant god to speak,to give signs in sacrificeor the flight of birds. Thoseendswe pursueagainst the gods'will can do us little goodwhen we gain them...25 So at the very beginning of the play, Ion tells why Apollo will not tell the truth. And, in fact, he himself never answers questions.This is a hiding-god. Creusa's rùflhat evenmore signilicant and striking is what occurs is at the end of the play when everything has been said by the

various charactersof the play, and the truth is known to everyone. For everyonethen waits for Apollo's appearance-whose presence wasnor visible throughout the entire play (in spite of the fact that he is a main character in the dramatic events that unfold). It was traditional in ancient Greek tragedyfor the god who constituted the main divine figure to appearlast. yet, at the end of the play Apollo-the shining god-does nor appear. Instead, Athene arrives to convey his message.And she appears above the roof of the Delphic remple, for the temple doors are not open. Explaining why she has come,she says: ATHENE: ...I am your friend here as in Athens,the city whosename I bear-I am Athene! I have come in haste from Apollo. He thought it right nor to appear ro you himself,lest there be reproaches openly uttered for what is past;so he sendsme with this message you. Ion, this to is your mother,and Apollo is your father.Xuthus did not begetyou, but Apollo gaveyou to him so that you might \ù7hen become recognized the heir of an illustrioushouse. Apollo's purpose in this matter was disclosedhe contrived a way to saveeachofyou from deathat eachother's hands.His intenrionhas beento keep the truth secretfor a while, and then in Athens to reveal Creusa as vour mother,and you as her son by Apollo...26 So even at this final moment, when everything has come to lighr, Apollo does nor dare to appearand speakthe truth. He hides, while Athene speaksinstead. \(/e must remember that Apollo is the propheric god in charge of speaking the


25.Euripides,1oz. Tians.Philip Velacott, lines 365-378.

26.Ibid.,lines 155,1-1568


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he truth to mortals. Yet he is unable to play this role because is ashamedof his guilt. Here, in .Ioz, silence and guilt are linked on the side of the god Apollo. ln Oedipusthe King, silenceand guilt are linked on the side of mortals. The main motif of lon concerns the human fight for truth against god's to silence: human beings must manage,by themselves, discover and to tell the truth. Apollo doesnot speakthe truth, he does not reveal what he knows perfectly well to be the case, he deceives mortals by his silenceor tells pure lies, he is not courageous enough to speak himselt and he useshis power, his freedom,and his superiority to cover up what he has done. Apollo is the anti-panhesi.astes. In this struggle againstthe god's silence,Ion and Creusa are the two maior parrhesiasticfigures. But they do not play the role of thepanhesiastes the sameway. For as a male born in ofAthenian earth,Ion hasthe right to usepanhesia. Creusa, on the other hand, plays the parrhesiasticrole as a woman who confesses thoughts.I would like now to examinethesetwo her parrhesiastic roles, noting the nature oftheir difference. lon's Role First, Ion. Ion's parrhesiasticrole is evident in the very long scenewhich takes place betweenIon and Xuthus early on in the play. Vhen Xuthus and Creusacme to consult the oracle, Xuthus enters the sanctuaryfirst since he is the husband and the man. He asks Apollo his question, and the god tells him that the first person he meetswhen he comesout of the temple will be his son. And, of course,the first one he meetsis Ion since,as Apollo's servant,he is alwaysat the door of the temple. Here we have to pay attention to the Greek expression, which is not literally translated in either the French or English editions. The Greek words are:

ncrîô'bpov neQurêvat. The use of the word neQurcévat indicatesthat Ion is said to be Xuthus' son "by nature": ION: What wasApollo's oracle? XUTHUS: He said,whoevermet me as I cameout of the templeION: \Thoever met you-yes: what about him? XUTHUS: -is my son! [æcxîô'èpov neQurcévcn]. ION: Your son by birth, or merely by gift? XUTHUS: A gift, yes;but mine by birth too [ôôpov, ôvta ô'è( bPoû1.:z So you see that Apollo does not give an obscure and ambiguousoracularpronouncementas he was wont to do with indiscretequestioners. The god's answeris a pure lie. For Ion is nor Xuthus' son "by nature" or "by birth." Apollo is not an ambiguoustruth-teller in this case.He is a liar. And Xuthus, deceivedby Apollo, candidly believesthat Ion-the first person he meets-is really,by nature, his own son. \7hat follows is the first main parrhesiasticsceneof the play,which can be divided into three parts. The first part Ul. 517-5271concerns the misunderstanding betweenIon and Xuthus. Xuthus leavesthe temple, seeslon, and-in light of Apolls's sns\rys1-believes that he is his son. Full of cheer,he goesto him and wants to kiss him [gi]"r1pcr, l. 519]. Ion-who doesnot know who Xuthus is, and doesnot know why he wants to kiss him-misunderstands Xuthus' behavior and thinks that Xuthus wanrs to have sex with him 27.Ibid.. lines 533-536.



(as any young Greek boy would if a man tried to kiss him). Most of the commentators,if they are even willing to recognize the sexualinterpretation Ion attributes to Xuthus'behavior, say that this is a "comic scene"-which sometimesoccurs in Euripides' tragedies.In any case,Ion saysto Xuthus: "If you continue harassingme, I'll shoot an arrow in your chest." This is similar to Oedipusthe King, where Oedipus does not know that Laius, King of Thebes, is his father. And he also the misunderstands nature of his encounterwith him; a quarand Laius is killed by Oedipus.But in lon there is rel ensues, this reversal:Xuthus, King of Athens, doesnot know that lon is zot his son, and Ion doesnot know that Xuthus thinks that of he is lon's father.So as a consequence Apollo's lies we are in a world of deception. The secondpart of this scene[ll. 528-562] concernsthe of mistrust Ion towardsXuthus. Xuthus tells Ion: "Tàke it easyl I if I want to kiss you, it is because am your father." But rather than rejoicing at the discoveryof knowing who his father is, Ion's first question to Xuthus is: "'Who, then, is my mother?" U. 539].For some unknown reason,Ion's principal concern is the knowledge of his mother's identity. But then he asks Xuthus: "How can I be your son?" And Xuthus replies: "I don't know how; I refer you to the god Apollo for what he has ô' said" [. 543: oirx d"ô', crvaqêp<o erç tôv 0eôv]. Ion then utters a very interesting line which has been completely mistranslatedin the French version.The Greek is [. 544]: Qêpel,ôyov ay6pee' crÀÀolv. The French edition translates as: "Come, let's speak about something else." A more accuraterendition might be: "Let us try another kind of discourse."So in answerto Ion's

question of how he could be his son, Xuthus replies that he doesnot know, but was told as much by Apollo. And lon tells him, in effect, then let's try another kind of discoursemore capableof telling the truth: ION: How could I be yours? XUTHUS: Apollo, not l, has the answer. ION (aftera pause): Let us try anothertack [. 544]. XUTHUS: Yes,that will help us more.28 Abandoning the oracular formulation of the god, Xuthus and Ion take up an inquiry involving the exchangeof questions and answers. the inquirer, Ion questionsXuthus-his As allegedfather-to try to discoverwith whom, when, and how it was possiblefor him to have a child such that lon might be his son. And Xuthus answershim: "Well, I think I had sex with a Delphian girl." \ùûhen?"Before I was married to Creusa."Ithere? "Maybe in Delphi." How? "One day when I was drunk while celebratingthe Dionysian torch feast." And of course,as an explanationof lon's birth, this entire train of thought is pure baloney; but they take this inquisitive method seriously,and try, as best they can, to discover the truth by their own means-led as they are by Apollo's lies. Following this inquiry, Ion rather reluctantly and unenthusiastically accepts Xuthus' hypothesis: he considers himself to be Xuthus' son. The third part of the parrhesiastic scenebetween politicaldestiny, Xuthus and Ion concernslorJ s and his potential political misfortunesif he arrives in Athens as the son and heir of Xuthus [ll. 563-675].For after persuadingIon that he

28. Euripides,lon. Tians. Ronald Frederick Villetts, lines542-544.

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is his son, Xuthus promises to bring Ion back to Athens where,as the son of a king, he would be rich and powerful. But Ion is not very enthusiasticabout this prospect;for he knows that he would be coming to Athens asthe son of Xuthus (a foreigner to Athenian earth),and with an unknown mother. And accordingto Athenian legislation,one cannot be a regular citizen in Athens if one is not the offspring of parents both of whom wereborn in Athens. So Ion tells Xuthus that he would be considereda foreigner and a bastard,i.e., a nobody. This anxiety leads to a long development which at hrst glance seemsto be a digression,but which presentsEuripides' critical portrayal of Athenian political life: both in a democracy and concerningthe political life of a monarch. there are three categories Ion explains that in a democracy of citizens [1. 596-603]: (l) those who are called, using the political vocabulary of the time, the aô6vcrtot: those Athenian citizens who have neither power nor wealth, and who hate all who are superior to them; (2) those who are lpqotoi ôuvdpevot: good Athenians who are capable of exercising power, but becausethey are wise [ooQoi] they keep silent toryrrror]and do not worry about the political affairs of the city [roù oæe6ôouotuetç tù np<inrcrta]; and finally (3) those reputable men who are powerful, and use their discourseand reason to participatein public political life. Envisioning the reacin tions of these three groups to his appearance Athens as a a bastard, Ion says that the first group) the foreigner and crôiivator, will hate him; the second group, the wise, will laugh at the young man who wishes to be regardedas one of the First Citizens of Athens; and the last group, the politicians,will be jealousof their new competitor and will try to get rid of him. So coming to a democraticAthens is not a cheerful prospectfor lon.

Following this portrayal of democratic life, Ion speaksof the negativeaspectsof a family life with a step-morherwho, herself childless,would not accepthis presenceas heir to the Athenian throne Ul. 608-6201. But then lon returns to the political picture, giving his portrayal of the life of a monarch: ION: ...4s for being a king, ir is overrared. Royalty concealsa life of torment behind a pleasantfacade.To live in hourly fear, looking over your shoulder for the assassinis that paradise? it evengood fortune?Give me the hapIs pinessof a plain man, not the life of a king, who loves to fill his court with criminals, and hates honest men for fear of death.You may tell me rhe pleasure being rich of outweighseverything.Bur to live surrounded by scandal, holding on to your money with both hands, beset by worry-has no appeal for me.ze These two descriptionsof Athenian democrariclife and the life of a monarch seemquite out of place in this scene,for Ion's problem is to discoverwho his mother is so as to arrive 'We in Athens without shameor anxiety. must find a reasonfor the inclusion of thesetwo porrrayals.The play continues and Xuthus tells Ion not to worry about his life in Athens, and for the time being proposes that lon pretend to be a visiting houseguest and not disclosethe "fact" that he is Xuthus' son. Later on, when a suitable time arrives, Xuthus proposes to make Ion his inheritor; but for now, nothing will be said to Creusa. Ion would like to come to Athens as the real successor to the seconddynastic family of Erectheus,but what Xuthus

29Euripides, 'frans. /on. PhilipVellacott, 621-632. lines

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proposes-for him to pretend to be a visitor to the city-does not address Ion's real concerns. So the scene seems crazy, makes no sense.Nonetheless,Ion acceptsXuthus' proposal but claims that without knowine who his morher is. life will be impossible: ION: Yes,I will go. But one pieceof good luck eludesme still: unlessI find my mother,my life is worthless.ro rù(rhy it impossible for Ion to live without finding his is mother?He continues: ION: ...If I may do so, I pray my mother is Athenian,so that through her I may have rights of speech[æopprlo:to]. For when a strângercomesinto the city of pure blood, t h o u g hi n n a m e a c i t i z e n ,h i s m o u t h r e m a i n sa s l a v e h e : has no right of speech[ncrpplota].r' So you see,Ion needsto know who his mother is so as to determine whether she is descended from the Athenian earth; for only thus will he be endowedwith panhesia. And he explains that someonewho comesto Athens as a foreigner-even if he is literally and legally considereda citizen-still cannot enjoy parhesia.'What, then, does the seemingly digressivecritical portrayâlsof democraticand monarchic life mean, culminatjust when Ion ing as they do in this final referenceto parrhesia accepts Xuthus' offer to return with him to Athens-especially given the rather obscureterms Xuthus proposes?

30. Euripides,1oz. Tians. Ronald Frederick Willetts, lines 668-670. 31. Ibtd., lines 67O-675.

The digressivecritical portrayals Ion gives of democracy and monarchy (or tyranny) are easy to recognize as typical instancesof parrhesiasticdiscourse.For you can find almost exactly the same sorts of criticisms later on coming from Socrates'mouth in the works of either Plato or Xenophon. Similar critiques are given later by Isocrates.So the critical depiction of democratic and monarchic life as presentedby Ion is part of the constitutional characterof the parrhesiastic individual in Athenian political life at the end of the Fifth and the beginning of the Fourth Centuries.Ion is iust such a paffhesiastes, the sort of individual who is so valuable i.e., to democracyor monarchy since he is courageous enough to explain either to the dertosor to the king just what the shortcomings of their life really are. Ion is a parrhesiasticindividual and shows himself to be such both in these small digressive political critiques, as well as afterwardswhen he states that he needs to know whether his mother is an Athenian since he needspanhesia. For despite the fact that it is in the nature of his character to be a panhesiastes, cannot legally or he institutionally use this natural panhesia with which he is endowed if his mother is not Athenian. Panhesiais thus not a right given equally to all Athenian citizens,but only to those who are especiallyprestigiousthrough their family and their birth. And Ion appears a man who is, by nature, a parrhesias astic individual, yet who is, at the sametime, deprived of the right offree speech. And why is this parrhesiastic figure deprived of his parrhesiastic right? Becausethe god Apollo-the prophetic god whose duty it is to speakthe truth to mortals-is not courageousenough to disclose lzisown faults and to act as a panhe.çiasres. order for lon to conform to his nature and to play the In parrhesiastic role in Athens, somethingmore is neededwhich

l\.4ichel Foucault


he lacks,but which will be given to him by the other parrhesiastic figure in the play, viz., his mother, Creusa.And Creusa willbe able to tell him the uuth, thus freeing her parrhesiastic son to rse his naturalpanhesia. Creusa's Role Creusa'sparrhesiastic role in the play is quite different from Ion's; as a woman, Creusa will not useparhesia to speak the truth about Athenian political life to the king, but rather to publicly accuse Apollo for his misdeeds. rJ(henCreusais told by the Chorus that Xuthus alone has beengiven a son by Apollo, she realizesthat not only will she not find the son she is searchingfor, but also that when she returns to Athens she will have in her own home a step-son who is a foreigner to the city, yet who will nonetheless succeed Xuthus as king. And for thesetwo reasons is infuriated not she only against her husband,but especiallyagainstApollo. For after being raped by Apollo, and deprived by him of her son, to learn that now shewill alsonot haveher questionsanswered while Xuthus receivesa son from the god-this proves to be too much for her to take. And her bitterness,her despair,and her anger bursts forth in an accusationmade againstApollo: she decidesto speakthe truth. Tiuth thus comesto light as an emotional reaction to the god's iniustice and his lies. In Sophocles' Oedipus the King, mortals do not accept Apollo's prophetic utterancessince their truth seemsincredible; and yet they are led to the truth of the god'swords in spite of their efforts to escape fate that hasbeenforetold by him. the In Euripides'1on,however,mortals are led to the truth in the faceofthe god's lies or silence,i.e., in spite ofthe fact that they are deceived by Apollo. As a consequence Apollo's lies, of Creusabelieves that Ion is Xuthus' natural son. But in her

emotional reaction to what she thinks is true, she ends up dis_ closing the truth. Creusa'smain parrhesiastic scene consists of two parts which differ in their poeric srrucrure and in the type of patrhe_ sia manifesred. The first part takesthe form of a beautiful long speech-a tirade againstApollo-while the secondpart is in the form of a stichomythro, dialogue between Creusa and her a servantconsistingofalternate lines, one after the other. First, the tirade. Creusaappearsat this moment in front of the temple stepsaccompanied an old man who is a trusted by servantof the family (and who remains silent during Creusa,s speech).Creusa'stirade against Apollo is that form of panhesia wheresomeone publicly accuses anotherof a crime, or of a fault or of an infustice that has been committed. And this accusa_ tion is an instance of panhesia insofar as the one who is accusedis more powerful than the one who accuses.For there is the danger that because ofthe accusationmade,the accused may retaliate in some way against his or her accuser.So Creusa's parhesia first takes the form of a public reproach or criticism againsra being to whom she is inferior in power,and upon whom she is in a relation ofdependence. is in this vul_ It nerablesituation that Creusadecidesto make her accusation: CREUSA:O my heart,how be silent?yet how can I speak of that secretlove,strip myselfof all shame? one barriIs er left still to preventme?\7hom have I now as my rival in virtue-/ Has not my husbandbecome betrayer? am my I cheatedof home, cheatedof children, hopes are gone which I could not achieve, the hopesof arrangingthings well by hiding rhe facrs, by hiding the birth which brought sorrow.No! No! But I swearby the starry abode of Zeus,by the goddess who reignson our peaksand by

l , 4 i c h eF o u c a u l t l


the sacredshore of the lake of Tiitonis, I will no longer concealit: when I have put away the burden, my heart Tearsfall from my eyes,and my spirit is will be easier. sick, evilly plotted againstby men and gods;I will expose them, ungrateful betrayersof women. O you who give the seven-tonedlyre a voice which rings out of the lifeless)rustic horn the lovely sound of the Muses'hymns, on you, Latona'sson,here in daylight I will lay blame. You came with hair flashing gold, as I gatheredinto my cloak flowers ablazewith their golden light. Clinging to my pale wrists as I cried for my mother's help you led me to bed in a cave,a god and my lover, with no shame,submitting to the Cyprian'swill. In misery I bore you a son,whom in fear of my mother I placed in that bed where you cruelly forced me. Ah! He is lost now,snatchedas food for birds, my son and yours; O lost! But you play the lyre, chantingyour paeans. O hear me, son of Latona, who assignyour prophecies from the golden throne and the temple at the earth's center,I will proclaim my words in your ears:you are an evil lover; though you owed no debt to my husband,you have set a son in his house.But my son' yes and yours, is hard-hearted, lost, carried away by birds, the clothes Delos hatesyou and his mother put on him abandoned. the young laurel which growsby the palm with its deliwhere Latona bore you, a holy child, fruit of cateleaves, Zeus.32


I .



lines 859-922. 32.Ibi.d.,

Regarding this tirade, I would like to emphasizethe following three points: (l) As you can see,Creusa's accusationis a public malediction against Apollo where, for example, rhe references Apollo as Latona's(Leto's) son are meant to conto vey the thought that Apollo was a bastard: the son of Latona and Zeus. (2) There is also a clear metaphorical opposition drawn between Phoebus Apollo as the god of light with his golden brightness,who, at the sametime, draws a young girl into the darkness of a cave to rape her and is the son of Latona-a divinity of the night, and so on. (3) And there is a contrast drawn betweenthe music of Apollo, with his sevenchord lyre, and the cries and shouts of Creusa(who cries for help asApollo's victim, and who alsomust, through her shouting malediction, speakthe truth the god will not utter). For Creusa delivers her accusationsbefore the Delphic temple doors-which are closed. The divine voice is silent while Creusaproclaims the truth herself. The second part of Creusa'sparrhesiasticscene directly follows this tirade when her old servantand guardian,who has heard all that she has said, takes up an interrogative inquiry which is exactlysymmetricalto the stichomythic dialoguethat occurred betweenIon and Xuthus. In the sameway, Creusa's servantasks her to tell him her story while he asks her questions such as when did theseeventshappen,where, how, and so on. Two things âre worthy of note about this exchange. First, this interrogativeinquiry is the reversalofthe oracular disclosure of truth. Apollo's oracle is usually ambiguous and obscure,never answersa set ofprecise questionsdirectly, and cannot proceedas an inquiryl whereasthe method ofquestion and answerbrings the obscureto light. Secondly, parCreusa's rhesiasticdiscourseis now no longer an accusationdirected

[/ichel Foucault

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towards Apollo, i.e., is no longer the accusationof a woman towards her rapist; but takes the form of a self-accusation where she reveals her own faults, weaknesses,misdeeds (exposingthe child), and so forth. And Creusa confesses rhe eventsthat transpired in a manner similar to Phaedra's confessionof love for Hippolytus. For like Phaedra,shealso manifests the samereluctance to say everything, and managesto let her servant pronounce those aspectsof her story which she does not want to confess directly-employing a somewhat indirect confessionaldiscoursewhich is familiar to everyone from Euripides' Hippolytus or Racine's Phaedra. In any case, think that Creusa's I truth-telling is what we could call an instance of pusonal (as opposed to political) panhesia. Ion's panhesia takes the form of truthful political criticism, while Creusa'spanhesiatakes the form of a trurhful accusationagainst another more powerful than she, and as a confession ofthe truth about herself. It is the combination of the parrhesiasticfrgures of Ion and Creusa which makespossiblethe full disclosureof truth at the end of the play.For following Creusa's parrhesiastic scene, no one except the god knows that the son Creusa had with Apollo is lon, just as Ion does not know that Creusa is his mother and that he is not Xuthus' son.Yet to combine the two parrhesiasticdiscoursesrequires a number of other episodes which, unfortunately, we have no time now to analyze. For example,there is the very interesting episodewhere Creusastill believing that lon is Xuthus' narural son-rries to kill Ion; and when Ion discoversthis plot, he tries to kill Creusaa peculiarreversalofthe Oedipal situation. Regardingthe schemawe outlined, however,we can now see that the series of truths descendedfrom Athens (Erectheus-Creusa-Ion) completeat the end of the play. Xuthus, is

also,is deceivedby Apollo to the end, for he returns to Athens still believing Ion is his narural son. And Apollo never appears anywherein the play: he conrinually remains silent.

Onesres [4oB8.G.1.,
A final occurrence of the word parthesia can be found in Euripides' Orestes, play written, or at leastperformed, in 40g a 8.C., just a few yearsbeforeEuripides' death,and at a moment of political crisis in Athens when there werenumerousdebates about the democraticregime. This text is interesting because it is the only passage Euripides where the word. in panhesiais usedin a peforativesense. The word occurson line 905 and is translatedhere as "ignorant outspokenness.,' The text in the play where the word appears in the narrative of a messenger is who has come to the royal palaceat Argos to tell Electra what has happened in the Pelasgian court ar Orestes, trial. For, as you know from Electra, Orestes and Electra have killed their mother, Clytemnestra, and thus are on trial for matricide. The narrative I wish to quote reads as follows: MESSENGER:...\7hen the full roll of citizenswas pre_ sent,a herald stood up and said "Who wishesto address the court, to say whether or not Orestesought to die for matricide?" this Talthybiusrose,who wasyour father's At colleaguein the victory over Tioy. Always subservientto those in power, he made an ambiguousspeech, with ful_ some praise of Agamemnon and cold words for vour

33. Third Lecrure: 7 November 1983.

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brother, twisting eulogy and censureboth together-layto ing down a law useless parents;and with every sengave ingratiating glances towards Aegisthus' tence friends. Heralds are like that-their whtllc race have learnt to iump to the winning side;their fricnd is anyone who has power or a governmentoffice. Prince Diomedes either you spokeup next. He urged them not to sentencc piety by banishing or your brother to death, but satisfy you. Someshoutedin approval; othersdisagreed. Next there stood up a man with a mouth like a runan ning spring,a giant in impudence, enrolledcitizen,yet putting his confidence in no Argive; a mere cat's-paw; and still bluster and ignorant outspokenness [æoppqotcr], persuasive enough to lead his hearersinto trouble. He yet, as said you and Orestesshould be killed with stones; your death, the words he usedwere not his he argued for own, but all prompted by Tyndareos. Another rose, and spoke against him-one endowed man; the sort not with little beauty,but a courageous a or market-place, manual often found mixing in street laborer-the sole backboneof the land; shrewd,when he chose, come to grips in argument;a man of blameless to p r i n c i p l ea n d i n t e g r i t y . son of Agamemnonshouldbe honHe said,Orestes ored with crowns for daring to avengehis father by taking woman'slife-one who corrupted a depravedand godless custom; since no man would leave his home, and arm himself, and march to war, if wives left there in trust

could be seducedby stay-at-homes, and brave men cuckolded. His words seemedsensibleto honest iudges; and there were no more speeches.3a As you can see,the narrative starts with a reference to the Athenian procedure for criminal trials: when all the citizens are present, a herald rises and cries "tiç 1pn(er lé1€rv""Who wishesto speak?"[. 885].For that is the Athenian right of equal speech (isegoria).TZooorators then speak, both of whom are borrowed from Greek mythology, from the Homeric world. The first is Tàlthybius, who was one of Agamemnon's companionsduring the war against the Tioians-speci{ically, his herald. Talthybius is followed by Diomedes-one of rhe most famous Greek heroes,known for his unmatched courage, bravery, skill in battle, physical strength, and eloquence. The messenger characterizes Tàlthybius as someonewho is not completelyfree,but dependentupon thosemore powerful than he is. The Greek text stares rhat he is "ùæô rdiq ôuvapévororl 1iyy..."-'<snder the power of the powerful" ("subservientto those in power") [. 889]. There are two orher plays where Euripides criticizes this type of human being, the herald. In The lYomen Tïoy,the very sameTàlthybius appears of after the city of Tioy has been captured by the Greek army to tell Cassandra that she is to be the concubineof Agamemnon. gives her reply to the herald's news by predicting Cassandra that she will bring ruin to her enemies.And, as you know, Cassandra'sprophecies are always true. Tàlthybius, however, doesnot believeher predictions. Since,as a herald, he doesnot know what is true (he is unable to recognize the trurh of Cassandra's utterances), but merely repeatswhat his masterAgamemnon-tells him to say, he thinks that Cassandrais simply mad; for he tells her: "où pp crpticrç é1erçQpévcrç"-

34. Euripides, Oestes. Tians. Philip Vellacott, lines 88't-931 [Lines considered an interpolation (in parenthesesin the text) omitted].


FeanrrsSprrcn s

"your mind is not in the right place" ("you're not in your right mind"). And to this Cassandra answers: CASSANDRA: "Servant"l You hear rhis servanr?He,s a herald.\7hat are heralds,then, but creatures universally loathed-lackeys and menials to governmentsand kings?You saymy morher is destinedfor Odysseus' home: what then of Apollo's oracles,spelt out to me, that she shall die here?r5 And in fact, Cassandra's mother, Hecuba, dies in Tioy. In Euripides' ThcSuppliant lVomm, there is also a discussion between an unnamed herald (who comes from Thebes) and Theseus (who is nor exactly the king, but the First Citizen of Athens) p. 399+631.rù(/hen herald enters he asks,"'u7ho is the the King in Athens?" Theseustells him that he will not be able to find the Athenian king since there is to bnannos the city: in THESEUS: ...This stateis not subjectro one man,swill, but is a free city. The king here is the people,who by yearly office govern in turn. rù(/e give no special power to wealth;the poor man'svoicecommands equalauthority.16 This sets off an argumentative discussion about which form of government is best: monarchy or democracy?The herald praises the monarchic regime, and criticizes democracy as subject to the whims of the rabble. Theseus' reply is in praiseof the Athenian democracywhere, because laws are the

written down, the poor and rich have equal rights, and where everyoneis free to speak in the ehklesia: THESEUS: ...Freedomlives in this formula: .,Who has good counselwhich he would offer to the city?" He who desiresto speak wins fame; he who does not is silenr. \fhere could greaterequalitybe found?37 The freedom to speakis thus synonymouswith democratic equality in Theseus'eyes,which he cites in opposirion ro the herald-the representative of tyrannic power. Since freedom residesin the freedom to speak the trurh, Tàlthybius cannot speakdirectly and frankly ar Oresres'trial since he is not free, but dependentupon those who are morc powerful than he is. Consequently, "speaksambiguously" he using a discoursewhich meansrwo oppo[Àé.prv ôr26ôpu0cr], site things at the same time. So we see him praising Agamemnon(for he was Agamemnon'sherald), but also condemning Agamemnon's son Orestes (since he does not approveof his actions).Fearful of the power of both facrions, and therefore wishing to please everybody, he speaks rwofacedly;but since Aegisthus' friends have come to power,and are calling for Orestes'death (Aegisthus,you remember from Electra, was also killed by Orestes), the end Tàlthybius conin demns Orestes. Following this negativemythological characreris a positive one: Diomedes.Diomedeswas famous as a Greek warrior both for his courageous exploits and for his noble eloquence: his skill in speaking, and his wisdom. Unlike Tàlthvbius.

35.Euripides, lVomen Tioy."hans. The of Philip Vellacotr,Lines 424429 'kans. 36.Euripides, Suppliant The lVomen. PhilipVellacott, 405-408. lines



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Diomedes is independent; he sayswhat he thinks, and proposesa moderatesolution which has no political motivation: it is not a revengeful retaliation. On religious grounds, "to satisfy piety," he urges that Orestesand Electra be exiled to puriand Aegisthus'deathsaccordfu the country of Clytemnestra's ing to the traditional religious punishment for murder. But despiteDiamedes'moderateand reasonable verdict, his opinion divides the assembly: some agree,others disagree. \ù7e then have two other speakerswho present themselves. Their namesare not given, they do not belong to the mythological world of Homer, they are not heroeslbut from the precise description which the reporting messengergives of them, we can seethat they are two "social types." The first one (who is symmetrical to Tâlthybius, the bad orator) is the sort of orator who is so harmful for a democracy.And I think we should determine carefully his specificcharacteristics. His first trait is that he has "a mouth like a running spring"-which translates the Greek word athuroglossos c oç]. Athuroglossor comes from yÀôôocr (tongue) [cr0ôpo/"orc (door); it thus literally refers to someonewho has a and Oûpa tongue but not a door. Hence it implies someonewho cannot shut his mouth. The metaphorof the mouth, teeth, and lips as a door that closedwhen one is silent occursfrequently in ancient Greek is literature. In the Sixth Century 8.C., for example, Theognis writes in his Elegiesthat there are too many garrulous people: Too many tongueshave gâteswhich fly apart Too easily,and care for many things That don't concernthem. Better to keep bad news Indoors. and onlv let the sood news out.r8

In the Second Century 4.D., in his essay"Concerning tlkativeness" [flepi côoÀeoXrag],Plutarch also writes that the teeth are a fence or gate such that "ifthe tongue does not obey or restrain itself, we may check its incontinence by biting it till it bleeds."3e This notion of being athuroglossos, of being athurostomia or (one who has a mouth without a door), refers [o0ùpootopia] to someone who is an endlessbabbler,who cannot keep quiet, and is prone to say whatever comes to mind. Plutarch compares the talkativeness such people with the Black Seaof which has neither doors nor gates to impede the flow of its watersinto the Mediterraneân: without doors and ...thosewho believethat storerooms purseswithout fastenings are of no use to their owncrs, y e t k e e pt h e i r m o u t h sw i t h o u t l o c k o r d o o r ,m a i n t a i n i n g as perpetualan outflow as the mouth of the Black Sel, appearto regard speech[À6yoq]as the leastvaluablc of' meetwith beliel-, rvhich all things.They do not, thereflore, i s t h e o b j e c to I a l l s p e e c h . a o As you can see,athuroglossos characterized by the firlis lowing two traits: (l) \fhen you have "a mouth like a running spring," you cannot distinguish those occasionswhen you should speak from those when you should remain silent; or that which must be said from that which must remain unsaid; or the circumstances and situations where speechis required from those where one ought to remain silent. Thus Theognis

38. Theognis, Elegies.'kans. Dorothea \7ender, lines 421424. 39. Plutarch, "Concerning Thlkativeness." Tians. W. C. Helmbold, 503c. 40. Ibid.


F r r n l e s sS p r r c x

states that garrulous people are unable to differentiate when one should give voice to good or bad news, or how to demarcate their own from other people's affairs-since they indiscretely intervene in the caresofothers. (2) As Plutarch notes, you when you areathuroglossos have no regard for the value of logos,for râtional discourse as a means of gaining accessto truth. Athuroglossos thus almost synonymous with parrhesia is taken in its pejorative sense,and exactly the opposite of parpositive sense (sinceit is a sign of wisdom to be able to rhesia's panhesia without falling into the garrulousness of use athuroglossos). One of the problems which the parrhesiastic charactermust resolve,then, is how to distinguish that which must be said from that which should be kept silent. For not everyonecan draw such a distinction, as the following example illustrates. In his treatise "The Education of Children" [flepi nclrôotv cryffiç1, Plutarch gives an anecdote of Theocritus, a sophist, as an example of athuroglossos of the misfortunes incurred and by intemperate speech. The king of the Macedonians, Antigonus, sent a messengerto Theocritus asking him to cometo his court to engage discussion.And it so happened in that the messengerhe sent was his chief cook, Eutropian. King Antigonus had lost an eye in battle, so he was one-eyed. Now Theocritus was not pleasedto hear from Eutropian, the king's cook, that he had to go and visit Antigonus; so he said to the cook: "I know very well that you want to serveme up raw to your Cyclops"+t-thus subfectingthe king's disfigurement and Eutropian's profession to ridicule. To which the cook replied: "Then you shall not keep your head on, but you

shall pay the penalty for this reckless talk fathurostomialand And when Eutropian reported Theocritus' madnessof yours."a2 remark to the king, he sent and had Theocritus put to death. As we shall see in the caseof Diogenes, a really fine and courageousphilosopher can usepanheslatowards a king; however, in Theocritus' case his frankness is not parrhesia but athurostomi.a since to joke about a king's disfrgurement or profession has no noteworthy philosophical signifia cook's or then, is the first trait of the cance. Athuroglossos athurostomia, third orator in the narration ofOrestes'trial. His secondtrait is that he is "io1riov Oprioer"-"a giant denotessomeone's in impudence" [. 903]. The word io266to strength, usually the physical strength which enablesone to overcomeothers in competition. So this speakeris strong, but of he is strong "Opd,ott" which meansstrong not because his reason,or his rhetorical ability to speak,or his ability to prohe nouncethe truth, but only because is arrogant.He is strong only by his bold arrogance. A third characteristic: "an enrolled citizen, yet no Argive." He is not native to Argos, but comesfrom elsewhere and has been integrated into the city. The expressionqvayroopévoç [. 904] refers to someone who has been imposed upon the members of the city as a citizen by force or by dishonorablemeans[what gets translatedas "a mere cat's paw"]. His fourth trait is given by the phrase "Oopirpcote rt'Loùvoç"-*putting his confidence in bluster." He is confident in thmubos [Oôpôpoç],which refersto the noise made by a strong voice, by a scream) a clamor, or uproar. \ù7hen,for instance,in battle, the soldiersscreamin order to bring forth

41. Plutarch, "The Education ofChildren." Tians. E C. Babbitt, lIc.


l\.4 ichel Foucaull


their own courageor to frighten the enemy,the Greeks used exclamation the word thorubos. the tumuhuous noise of a crowded (an.), F Or assemblywhen the people shouted was called thorubos. the exclamation (fr.) So third orator is not confident in his ability to formulare arriculate discourse, but only in his ability to generate emotional an reaction from his audienceby his strong and loud voice. This direct relationshipbetweenthe voice and the emotional effect it produceson the ehklesia thus opposedto the rational sense is ofarticulate speech. The final characteristic ofthe third (negative) speakeris that he also puts his confidencein "rcrp0et nu,pprloicr"-"ignorant outspokenness llpanhesiaf." The phrase "rcrpcrOetlrcrppndrcr," repeatsthe expressionathuroglossos, but with its political implications. For although this speakerhas been imposed upon the citizenry, he nonetheless possesses panhesiaas a formal civic right guaranteedby the Athenian constitution.\(rhat designateshis parrhesia panheas sic in its peforativeor negativesense, however,is that it lacks mathesis [pdenorq]-learning or wisdom. In order lor panhesia to have positive political effects,it must now bc linked to a good education,to intellectual and moral formation, to paideia or mathesis. Only then will panhesia be more than thorubos or sheer vocal noise. For when speakersuse panhesla without mathesis, when they use "rcxtrrcrOet napploicr," the city is led into terrible situations. You may recall a similar remark of Plato's,in his Seventh Letter [336b], concerning the lack of mathesis. There Plato explainsthat Dion was not able to succeed with his enterprise in Sicily (viz., to realizein Dionysius both a ruler of a grear city and a philosopher devoted to reasonand jusrice) for two reasons. The first is that some daimonor evil spirit may have been jealous and wanted vengence. And secondly, Plato explains that ignorance[opcr0ia] broke our in Sicily. And of

cpafia Plato saysthat it is "the soil in which all manner of evil to all men takes rool and flourishes and later produces a fruit most bitter for thosewho sowedit."43 The characteristics, then, of the third speaker-a cerrain social type who employspanhesiain its peiorativesense-are these:he is violent, passionate, foreigner to the city, lacking a in mathesis, and therefore dangerous. And now we come to the fourth and final speaker at Orestes'trial. He is analogousto Diomedes: what Diomedes was in the Homeric world, this last orator is in the political world of Argos. An exemplificationof the positivepanhesiastes as a "social type," he has the following traits. The trst is that he is "one endowedwith little beauty,but a courageous man" [popQfrpèv oùr eu<rlnôç avôpéioç ô'crv(pl 918]. Unlike a woman, he is not fair to look at, but a "manly [. man," i.e., a courageous man. Euripides is playing on the etymology of the word crvôpeio (manliness or courage),which comesfrom the word cxv(p.'Avrlp means "man" (understood âsthe oppositeof"woman" and not as the oppositeof"beast"). For the Greeks,courageis a virile quality which women were said not to possess. Secondly, is "the sort not often found mixing in street he or marketplace[crpp<i]" [.919]. So this representative the of positive use of.panhesrais not the sort of professional politician who spends most of his time in the agora-the place where the people, the assembly,met for political discussion and debate.Nor is he one of those poor personswho, without any other means to live bg would come ro the dgora in order to receivethe sums of money given to those taking part in the

(YIl). Tians. A. Post,336b. Laws,688c. 43.Plato, Leners L. Cf.

[ , 4 i c h eF o u c a u l t l

F E A R L E s sS P E E c H

ekklesia. takes part in the assemblyonly to participate in He important decisionsat critical moments. He does not live off ofpolitics for politics' sake. Thirdly, he is an "autourgos" [crutoup^pç]-'(3 1nx1s3l laborer" [. 920]. The word autourgos refers to someone who works his own land. The word denotesa specific social category-neither the great landowner nor the peasanr,but the landowner who lives and works with his own hands on his own estate, occasionally with the help of a few servanrs or slaves. Such landowners-who spent most of their time working the fields and supervisingthe work of their servants-were \ù7hatis highly praised by Xenophon in his Oeconomicus.aa most interesting in Orestes that Euripides emphasizes is the political competence such landownersby mentioning three of aspects their character. of The {irst is that they are alwayswilling to march ro war and fight for the city, which they do better than anyone else. Ofcourse, Euripides doesnot give any rational explanationof why this should be so; but if we refer to Xenophon's Oeconomicus where the autourgos depicted,there are a numis ber of reasons given.a5A major explanation is that the landownerwho works his own land is, naturally, very interested in the defense and protection ofthe lands ofthe counrryunlike the shopkeepers and the people living in the city who do not own their own land, and hencedo not care as much if the enemy pillages the countryside. But those who work as farmers simply cannot tolerate the thought that the enemy might ravagethe farms, burn the crops, kill the flocks and herds, and so onl and hence they make good fighters.
44. Cf. Xenophon,Oeconomicus. Tians. Carnes Lord, Chapter V. 45. Ibid., Chapter XXI.

is Secondly, rhe autourgos able "to come to grips in argument" [. 921), i.e., is able to use languageto propose good advice for the city. As Xenophon explains, such landowners are used to giving orders to their servants, and making deciSo sions about what must be done in various circumstances. not only are they good soldiers,they also make good leaders. Hence when they do speak to the ehklesia,rhey do not use t oand constirubos;but what they say is important, reasonable, tutes good advice. In addition, the last orator is a man of moral integrity: principle and integrity" |. 9221. "a man of blameless A final point about the autourgos this: whereasthe preis vious speaker wanted Electra and Orestesto be put to death by stoning, not only doesthis landowner call for Orestes'acquittal, he believesOrestesshould be "honored with crowns" for what he has done. To understand the signifrcance of the autourgos' statement,we need to realizethat what is at issuein Orestes'trial for the Athenian audience-living in the midst \(ar-is the questionof war or peace:will of the Peloponnesian one that will the decisionconcerningOrestesbe an aggressive hostilities, as in war, or will the institute the continuation of ofan acquitdecisioninstitute peace? The autourgos'proposal But he alsostatesthat Orestes tal symbolizesthe will for peace. should be crowned for killing Clytemnestra "since no man would leavehis home, and arm himself, and march to war, if wives left there in trust could be seducedby stay-at-homes, and brave men cuckolded" p. 925-9291.We must remember that Agamemnon was murdered by Aegisthus iust after he for returned home from the Tiofan \ù7ar; while he was fighting the enemy away from home, Clytemnestrawas living in adultery with Aegisthus. And now we can see the precise historical and political


Franrrss Sprecs

context for this scene.The year ofthe play's production is 408 B.C.,a time when rhe competition betweenAthens and Sparta in the PeloponnesianWar was still very sharp. The two cities have been Iighting now for rwenty-three long years,with short intermittent periods of truce. Athens in 408 8.C., following several bitter and ruinous defeatsin 413, had recovered some of its naval power.But on land the situation was not good,and Athens was vulnerable to Spartan invasion. Nonetheless, Sparta made severaloffers of peaceto Athens, so that the issue of continuing the war or making peacewas vehemently discussed. In Athens the democratic party was in favor of war for economic reasonswhich are quite clear; for the party was generally supported by merchants, shop-keepers, businessmen, and those who were interestedin the imperialistic expansion of Athens. The conservative aristocratic party was in favor of peacesince they gained their support from the landowners and others who wanteda peacefulco-existence with Spana,aswell as an Athenian constitution which was closer, in some respects, the spartan constitution. to The leader of the democratic party was Cleophon-who was not native to Athens, but a foreigner who registered as a citizen. A skitlful and influential speaker, was infamously he portrayed in his life by his own conremporaries (for example, it was said he was not courageousenough to becamea soldier, that he apparentlyplayed the passiverole in his sexual relations with other men, and so on). So you see that all of the characteristics of the third orator, the negative panhesiastes, can be attributed to Cleophon. The leader of the conservativeparty was Therameneswho wanted to return to a Sixth-Century Athenian constitution that would institute a moderateoligarchy. Following his

proposal,the main civil and political rights would have been reserved for the landowners. The traits of rhe autourgos,the p ositive p arrhe iastes, s thus correspond to Theramenes.aT So one ofthe issuesclearly presentin Orestes'trial is the question that was then being debatedby the democratic and conservativeparties about whether Athens should continue the war with Sparta,or opt for peace.



around In Euripides' Ion, wrirten ten years earlier than Orestes, 8.C., panhesiawas presented as having only a posirive 418 senseor value. And, as we sa% it was both the freedom to speakone's mind, and a privilege conferred on the {irst citi'fhe zens of Athens-a privilege which Ion wished to enioy. parhesiastes spoke the truth precisely becausehe was a good citizen, was well-born, had a respectfulrelation to the city, to the law, and to truth. And for Ion, the problem was that in the role which camenatorder for him to assume parrhesiastic urally to him, the truth about his birth had to be disclosed. Apollo did not wish to reveal this truth, Creusa But because againstthe god in had to disclosehis birth by using parrhesia a public accusation. And thus [on's panhesiawas established, was grounded in Athenian soil, in the game betweenthe gods

47. According to Foucault's scheme, the successionofspeakers mav tre placed as follows: Parrhesia NEGATIVE SENSE POSII'IVl, SliNSll Diomcdcs Mythological Figures: tlthybius parrhesi.ttstes aut0urgos umathes Politico-Social Types: P o l i t i c a l F i g u r e sI m p l i e d : [ C l e o p h o n ] ['fhcmmcncsl

l [ , 1 r 1r r ' l o L l C a u l l

Frnnrer5g p65ç6 5

and mortals. So there was no "problematization" ol thc punheas sicstes such within this first conception. itself however'there is a split within ptrnlrr'sitt ln Orcstes, and tlrc prohlem of between its positive and negative senses; panhesiaoccurssolely within the field of human p;rrrhcsiastic roles. This crisis of the functbn of pathesia hrts lwo major aspects. who is entitlc(l lo usepdrthe The first concerns question: rhesia? it enough simply to acceptpanhesiaas a civil right Is such that any and every citizen can speakin thc assemblyif grantexclusivcly Or and when he wishes? shouldpanhesiabe or to only according their socialstatus pered to somecitizens sonal virtues? There is a discrepancybetween an egalitarian and the neceseveryoneto usepanhesia, systemwhich enables those who are able sity of choosing among the citizenry in (because their socialor personalqualities)to uscporrlresic of such a way that it truly benefitsthe city. And this discrepancy generatesthe emergenceof panhesiaas a problematic issue. (the equality of all citizens in front of the For unlike isonomia (the legal right givcn to everyoneto speakhis law) and isegoria own opinion),panhesiawas n()t clcarlv dcfined in institutional terms. There was no law, tor cxarnplc'protecting the panhefrom potential retaliationor pttttishmentfor what he sidstes said. And thus there was also a problctn in thc relation ltow ts it pttssiblcto givc legal betweennomosand aletheiu: o t f o r m t o s o m e o n w h o r c l a t e so t r t t l l t / ' l l t c r cl t r cl o r l t t a l a w s f e
valid reasoning, but ntt social. poltttt:tl. ()r ltl\tlltlll()ltltl laws determining who is ablc to .rl{ltA t lrc l rttllt

The panhesiastes'relation truth can no longer simply be to for estab,lished pure franknessor sheercourage, the relation by now req\rires education or) more generally, some sort of personal training. But the precisesort ofpersonal training or eduwith cation nssdsd is also an issue (and is contemporaneous it the problem of sophistry) .In Orestes, seemsmore likely that lhe rnallls5isrequired is not that of the Socratic or Platonic would that an autourgos concgpli6n,but the kind of experience get tblougb his own life. And now I think we can begin to seethat the crisis regarding banhesiais a problem of truth: for the problem is one of recognizing who is capableof speaking the truth within the limits of an institutional system where everyone is equally entitled to give his own opinion. Democracy by itself is not able 1s determine who has the specificqualities which enable the him to speakthe truth (and thus should possess right to t6s truth). Andpanhesia,as a verbal activity' as pure franktell nessin speaking,is also not sufficient to disclosetruth since g can negaliv p anftesic, gnorant outspokenness, also result' i of at which emerges the crossroads crisis of.panhesia, The and an interrogation about an i\1s11qg21ion about democracy of trutl, gfvss rise ro a problematization some hitherto unprobeducalemitic relations betweenfreedom, power' democracy, tion and truth in Athens at the end of the Fifth Century.From in to the breviousproblem of gaining access parrhesia spite of of panhesia, the lilence of god, we move to a problematization i.e.,ranhesi.a itself becomesproblematic' split within itself' as do not wish to imply thatpanhesia, an explicit notion, I eme'ges at this moment of crisis-as if the Greeks did not previously,or havt xly coherentidea of the freedom of speech of tlrevalue of free speech. What I mean is that there is a new protlematization of the relations between verbal activity,

zakon in resnica

T h e s e c o n d a s p e c t( ) l l l t c e r t s t sr t t l t t c l l l l l l N I l l ( l t l t l \ I l { ) t lr } l p a t t h e s i a h a s t o d o w i t h t h c r c l l t l i o t t t t l p 1 1 7 7 l p ' ' 1l,.t t r r ( r / l l r ' . t l st'o knowledge and educatitltt ofitselfis r v h i t l r t t t c l t t t s t l t ; l l / r " r r ' " r\ r r ' l t l i t l l ( l

no longer ctlnsitlcrctl il(lc(ltlillclo tltst l.st' tltt' ttttllt.

lvlicheFoucault l

education,freedom,power, and the existing political institutions which marks a crisis in the way freedom of speech is understood in Athens. And this problematizarion demands a new way of taking care of and asking questions about these relations. I emphasizethis point for at least the following merhodological reason.I would like to distinguish between rhe "history of ideas" and the "history of thought." Most of the time a historian of ideastries to determine when a specificconcept appears> this moment is often identified by the appearance and of a new word. But what I am attempting to do as a historian of thought is something different. I am trying to analyze the way institutions, practices, habits, and behavior become a problem for people who behavein specific sorts of ways, who have certain types of habits, who engagein certain kinds of practices)and who put to work specific kinds of institutions. The history ofideas involves the analysisofa notion from its birth, through its developmenr,and in the setting of other ideas which constitute its context.[The history of thought is the analysisof the way an unproblematic lield of experience, or a set of practices,which were acceptedwithout question, which were familiar and "silent," out of discussion,becomes a problem, raisesdiscussionand debate,incites new reactions, and induces a crisis in the previously silent behavior, habits, practices, and institutionsJttre history of rhought, understood in this wag is the history of the way peoplebegin to rake care of something, of the way they becomeanxious about this or that-for example,about madness,about crime, about sex, about themselves, about truth. or

in Parchesia the Crisis of
Democratic Institutions "

I r ^ k L E S SS p E E c H

I would like to complete what I began last time about punhesia and the crisis of democratic institutions in the Fourth Century B.C.; and then I would like to move on to the analysisof another form of panhesia,viz., panhesiain the field of personalrelations(to oneselfand to others),or paîhesia and the careof the self. The explicit criticism of speakers who utilizedpanhesinin its negativesensebecamea commonplacein Greek political \ùtar; and a debateemerged thought after the Peloponnesian concerningthe relationship of panheslato democraticinstitutions.ae The problem, very roughly put, was the following. Democracyis founded by a politeia,a constitution, where the demos, people, exercisepower, and where everyone is equal rhe in front of the law. Such a constitution, however, is condemned to give equal place to all forms of panhesia,even the panhesiais given even to the worst citizens,the worst. Because overwhelminginfluence of bad, immoral, or ignorant speâkers may lead the citizenry into tyranny, or may otherwiseendanger the city. Hencepanhesiamay be dangerousfor democracy itself. To us this problem seemscoherentand familiar, but for the Greeksthe discoveryof this problem, of a necessary antinomy between panhesia-freedom of speech-and democracy, inaugurateda long impassioneddebateconcerningthe precise nature of the dangerous relations which seemed to exist between democracy,/ogos, freedom, and truth. W'emust take into accountthe fact that we know one side of the discussionmuch better than the other for the simple
48. Fourth Lecture: 14 November 1983. 49. Cf. Robert J. Jonner,,{specn of Athenian Democracy, 1933 (Chapter IV: "Freedom of Speech"); A.H.M. Jones, "The Athenian Democracy and its Critics" in Athenian Democracy,1957: 4l-72; Giuseppe Scarpat,Panhesia, 38-57.




reason that most of the texts which have been preserved from this period come from writers who were either more or less directly affiliated with the arisrocraric party, or at least distrustful of democratic or radically democratic institutions. And I would like to quote a number of these texts as examples of the problem we are examining. The first one I would like to quote is an ultra-conservative, ultra-aristocraticlampooning of the democraticAthenian constitution, probably writren during the secondhalf of the Fifth Century. For a long time this lampoon was attributed to Xenophon. But now scholarsagreethat this attribution was not correct, and the Anglo-American classicists even have a nice nickname for this Pseudo-Xenophon, the unnamed author of this lampoon. They call him the "Old Oligarch.,' This text must came from one of those aristocraticcircles or political clubs which were so acrivein Athens at the end of the Fifth Century. Such circles were very influential in the antidemocraticrevolution of 4ll B.C. during the Peloponnesian \ùflar. The lampoon takes the form of a paradoxicalpraise or eulogy-a genre very familiar to the Greeks.The writer is supposedto be an Athenian democratwho focuses someof the on most obvious imperfections, shortcomings, blemishes, failures>etc., of Athenian democratic institutions and political life; and he praisesthese imperfecrionsas if they were qualities with the most positive consequences. The text is without any real literary value since the writer is more aggressivethan witty. But the main thesis which is at the roor of most criticismsof Athenian democraticinstitutions can be found in this text, and is, I think, significant for this type ofradically aristocratic attitude. This aristocratic thesis is the following. The demos,the

people, are the most numerous. Since they are the most is numerous, the demos also comprised of the most ordinary, and indeed, even the worst, citizens. Therefore the demoscannot be comprisedof the best citizens.And so what is best for rhe demos cannot be what is best for the polis, for the city. \Ûith this general argurnent as a background, the "Old Oligarch" ironically praisesAthenian democraticinstitutions; and there are samelengthy passages caricaturing freedom ofspeech: Now one might saythat the right thing would be that [the people] not allow all to speakon an equal footing, nor men to have a seatin the council,but only the cleverest point, too, they havedetermined and the best.But on this on the perfectly right thing by also allowing the vulgar peopleto speak.For if only the aristocracy were allowed to speakand took part in the debate,it would be good to But but not to the proletarians. now them and their peers, that any vulgar personwho wants to do so may step forthat which is goodto he ward and speak, will just express him and his equals. One might ask: How should such a person be able to Well, understandwhat is good to him or to the people? vulgarthat this man's ignorance, the masses understand ity, and sympathyare more useful to them than all the man. morals,wisdom,and antipathyof the distinguished With sucha socialorder.it is true. a statewill not be able to developinto perfectionitself, but democracywill be best maintained in this manner.For the people do not of want to be in the circumstances slavesin a statewith an ideal constitution,but to be free and be in power; whether the constitution is bad or no, they do not care



very much. For what you think is no ideal constitution, is just the condition for the people being in power and being free. For if you seekan ideal constitutionyou will seethat in the first place the laws are made by the most skillful persons;further the aristocracy will consultabout the affairs ofthe stateand put a stopto unruly persons havinga seat in the council or speaking taking part in the assembly or of the people.But the people,well, they will as a consequenceof thesegood reforms rather sink into slavery.5o Now I would like to switch to another text which presents a much more moderate position. It is a text written by Isocrates in the middle of the Fourth Century; and Isocrates refers several times to the notion of parhesia and to the problem of free speech in a democracy. At the beginning of his great oration, "On the Peace"[llepi" dtp(vqç], written in 355 B.C., Isocrates contrasts the Athenian people's attitude towards receiving advice about their private businesswhen they consult reasonable, well-educatedindividuals with the way they consideradvicewhen dealing with public affairsand political activities: you ...whenever takecounsel your privatebusiregarding nessyou seekout as counsellors men who are your superiors in intelligence, but wheneveryou deliberate the on business the stateyou distrust and dislike men of that of

character and cultivate,instead, most depraved the ofthe oralors who come before you on this platform; and you prefer as being better friends of the people thosewho are drunk to those who are sober,those who are witless to those who are wise, and those who dole out the public money to thosewho perform public servicesat their own expense.So that we may well marvel that anyone can expecta statewhich employssuchcounsellors advance to to betterthings.sr But not only do Athenians listen to the most depraved orators; they are not even willing to hear truly good speakers, for they deny them the possibility ofbeing heard: you do not hear with equal favor the I observe...that speakers who address you, but that, while you give your attention to some, in the caseof others you do not even suffertheir voiceto be heard.And it is not surprisingthat you do this; for in the past you have formed the habit of driving all the oratorsfrom the platform except thosewho supportyour desires.52

50. Pseudo-Xenophon, 77re Constitutian of the Athenians. Tians. Hartvig Frisch, SS6-9.

51. Isocrates,"On the Peace."Tians. George Norlin, Sll3. In his "Third Philippic" [34] B.C.], Demosthenes similarly remarks: "In other mamers you think it so necessary to granr general freedom of speech [panhesial to everyone in Athens that you even allow aliens and slaves to share in the privilege, and many menials may be observed among you speaking their minds with more liberty than citizens enioy in other states; but from your deliberations you have banished it utterly. Hence the result is that in the Assembly your self-complacency is flattered by hearing none but pleasant speeches, but your policy and your practice are already involving you in the gravest perils" [Tians. J.H. Vince; SS 3-4]. 52. Isocrates,"On the Peace," $3.



And that, I think, is important. For you seethat the differencebetweenthe good and the bad orator doesnot lie primarily in the fact that one givesgood while the other givesbad advice.The differencelies in this: the depravedorators,who by are accepted the people,only say what the people desireto hear. Hence, Isocrates calls such speakers "flatterers" [rô]"crreç].The honest orator)in contrast,has the ability, and He is courageous enough, to opposethe demos. has a critical role to play which requiresthat he attempt to and pedagogical transform the will of the citizens so that they will serve the best interestsof the city. This opposition betweenthe people's will and the city's best interests is fundamental to Isocrates' criticism of the democratic institutions of Athens. And he it concludesthat because is not even possibleto be heard in Athens if one doesnot parrot the demos'will, there is democracy-which is a good thing-but the only parrhesiasticor outspoken speakersleft who have an audienceare "reckless orators" and "comic poets": to ...I know that it is hazardous opposeyour views and government, there existsno that, although this is a free "freedom of speech" ft;anhesial except that which is enjoyed in this Assemblyby the most recklessorators' who care nothing for your welfare,and in the theatreby the comic poets.5l

Hence, rcal panhesia, panhesia in its positive, critical sense, doesnot exist where democracyexists. In the "Areopagiticus"[355 B.C.], Isocraresdraws a set of distinctions which similarly expresses this generalidea of the incompatibility of true democracy and critical panhesia. For he comparesthe old Solonian and Cleistheneanconstiturions to presentAthenian political life, and praisesthe older polities on the grounds that they gave to Athens democracy [ôqporpadcr], liberty [bÀ^eut0epia],happiness [eirôartrrovicr], and equality in front of the law [içovopia]. All of thesepositive features of the old democracy, however, he claims have become perverted in the present Athenian democracy. Democracyhas becomelack of self-restraint[crrcoÀao(a]; liberty has become lawlessness[rcrpcrvofra]; happiness has becomethe freedom to do whateverone pleases [b(ou(ra roô ttovtcl rorsîv]; and equaliry in front of the law has become panhesia.sa Panhesi.a this text has only a negative)peiorative in sense. as you can see,in Isocratesthere is a constant posiSo, tive evaluationof democracyin general,but coupled with the assertionthat it is impossible to enjoy both democracyand panhesia(understoodin its positive sense). Moreover, there is the samedistrust of the demos'feelings, opinions, and desires which we encountered. in more radical form. in the Old Oligarch'slampoon. A third text I would'like to examine comes from Plato's Republic [Book VIII, 557a-bf, where Socrates explains how democracyarisesand develops.For he tells Adeimantus that: \ù7henthe poor win, the result is democracy.They kill some of the opposite party, banish others, and grant the
54. Isocrates,'âreopagiticus." Tians. George Norlin, $20.

53. Isocrates,"On the Peace."Trans. George Norlin, $14. Ofcomicpcniesla \(erner Jaegerwrites: "Comedy was produced by democracy as an antiand dote to its own overdoseofliberty thereby outdoing its own excesses, extending panhesid, its vaunted freedom ofspeech, to subiects which are usually tabu even in a free political system... Comedy was the censorship of Athens" [Paideia,Vol. l. Tians. Gilbert Highet;36Ç365].



rest an equal sharein civil rights and government, officials beingusually appointedby lot.s5 Socratesthen asks: "Vhat is the character of this new regime?" And he saysof the peoplein a democracy: First of all, they are free. Liberty and free speechft;anhesial are rife everywhere,anyone is allowed to do what he likes... That being so, every man will arrangehis own mannerof life to suit his pleasure.56 \ûhat is interesting about this text is rhar Plato doesnot blame panhesza endowing everyone with the possibility of for influencing the city including the worst citizens. For Plato, the primary danger of panhesiais not that it leads to bad decisions in government,or provides the meansfor someignorant or corrupt leaderto gain power, to becomea tyrant. The primary danger of liberty and free speechin a democracy is what results when everyonehas his own manner of life, his own style of life, or what Plato calls "rccrrcôreuq toô ffrou." For then there can be no common logos, possibleunity, for the no city. Following the Platonic principle that there is an analogous relation betweenthe way a human being behaves and the way a city is ruled, between the hierarchical organization of the facultiesof a human being and the constitutional make-up you can seevery well that if everyonein the city of the polis, behavesjust as he wishes,with eachpersonfollowing his own opinion, his own will or desires,then there are in the city as many constitutions,as many small autonomouscities, as there 55.Plaro,Republrc. F M. Cornford. Tians. BookVIII, 557a. 56. rbid.,557b.

are citizens doing whateverthey please.And you can seethat Plato also considers parhesia not only as the freedom to say whatever one wishes, but as linked with the freedom to do whateverone wants. It is a kind of anarchy involving the free_ dom to chooseone's own style of life without limit. rù(/ell, there are numerous other things to say about the political problematization of panhesiain Greek culture, bur I think that we can observetwo main aspectsof this prob_ lematization during the Fourth Century. First, asis clearin Plato'stext for example,the problem of the freedom of speech becomes increasingly related to the choiceofexistence,to the choiceofone's way oflife. Freedom in the use of logos increasinglybecomesfreedom in the choice of àros. And as a result,panhesia regardedmore and more as is a personalattitude, a personalquality, as a virtue which is use_ ful for the city's politicat life in rhe caseofpositive or critical panhesia, or as a danger for the city in the case of negative, peiorative panhesia. In Demosthenes, for example, one can find a number of references to panhesia;s7but panhesia is usually spoken of as a personal quality, and not as an institutional right. Demosthenes does not seekor make an issue of institutional guaranteesfor panhesia,but insists on the fact that he, as a per_ sonal citizen, will useparràesia because must boldly speak he the truth about the city's bad politics. And he claims rhat in so doing he runs a grearrisk. For it is dangerous him to speak for freely,given that the Athenians in the Assembly are so reluc_ tant to acceptany criticism. Secondly,we can observeanother transformation in the

(hations: 57.Cf.Demosthenes, 4,51;6,31;9,3; 5g,6g; 21. Fr.

M i c h e lF o u c a u l t

Feanress peecs S

problematization of panhesia:parrhesiais increasingly linked to another kind of political institution, viz', monarchy' Freedom of speechmust now be used towards the king' But obviously in such a monarchic situation, panhesin is much more dependentupon the personalqualities both of the king (who must chooseto accept or reiect the use of panhesia),and of the king's advisors. Panhesi'ais no longer an institutional right or privilege-as in a democratic city-but is much more a personalattitude, a choice ofbios. This transformation is evident, for example, in Aristotle' Thewoû,panhesia is rarely used by Aristotle, but it doesoccur There is' however, no political analysis in four or five places.58 of the concept of panhesia as connected with any political institution. For when the word occurs' it is always either in relation to monarchy, or as a personal feature of the ethical' moral character. In the Constitutionof Athens, Aristotle gives an example of positive, critical panhesia in the tyrannic administration of pisistratus.As you know, Aristotle consideredPisistratusto be a humane and beneficent tyrant whose reign was very fruitful for Athens. And Aristotle gives the following accountof how Pisistratusmet a small landowner after he had imposed a ten percenttax on all Produce: in often madeexpeditions personinto the ... [Pisistratus] inspectit and to settledisputesbetweenindicountryto viduals, that they might not come into the city and that' as their farms.It wasin one of the progresses neglect with the man had his adventure Pisistratus the storygoes, 58.Cf.Aristotle,Eth.Nic.ll24b2g,ll65a29;Poll3l3bl5;Rhet'1382b20; AI. Rhet. 1432b18.

of Hymettus, who was cultivating the spot afterwards known as "Tâx-free Farm." He saw a man digging and working at a very stony piece of ground, and being surprisedhe senthis attendantto askwhat he got out of this plot of land. 'Achesand pains,"said the man; "and that's what Pisistratusought to have his tenth of." The man spoke without knowing who his questioner was; but Pisistratuswas so pleasedwith his frank speech ftnrrhesia] and his industry that he grantedhim exemption.5e Sopanhesiaoccurshere in the monarchic situation. The word is also used by Aristotle in the Nicomachean Etftics [Book IV,ll24b28f, not to characterizea political practice or institution, but as a trait of the magnanimousman, the megalopsychos [peycÀôyu1oç]. Some of the other characteristics of the magnanimousman are more or less related to the parrhesiasticcharacter and attitude. For example, rhe megalopsychos courageous,but he is not one who likes danger so is much that he runs out to greet it, i.e., he is not "QtÀorrvôtvoç." His courage is rational IlL24b7-91. He prefers alethein doxa, truth to opinion. He does not like flatterers. io And since he looks down on [rataQpovdiv] other men, he is "outspoken and frank" lll24b28l. He usespanhesia to speak the truth because is able to recognizethe faults of others: he he is consciousof his own differencefrom them. of his own superiority. So you see that for Aristotle, panhesiais either a moralcthical quality, or pertains to free speech as addressedto rr monarch.Increasingly,thesepersonaland moral featuresof becomemore pronounced. lrùfihesia
'r r\ristotle, Con*itution of Athens,Tians. E. G. Kenyon, 16.

l V i c h e lF o u c a u l t


problematization of panhesia:parthesiais increasingly linked to another kind of political institution' viz.' monarchy. Freedom of speech must now be used towards the king' But obviously, in such a monarchic situation, panhesia is much more dependentupon the personalqualities both of the king (who must chooseto accept or reject the use of panhesia), and of the king's advisors. Panhesia is no longer an institutional right or privilege-as in a democratic city-but is much more a personalattitude, a choice ofbios. This transformation is evident, for example, in Aristotle. "lhewordpanhesia is rarely used by Aristotle, but it doesoccur There is, however' no political analysis in four or five places.sS panhesia as connected with any political of the concept of institution. For when the word occurs, it is alwayseither in relation to monarchy, or as a personal feature of the ethical, moral character. In the Constitutionof Athens, Aristotle gives an example of positive, critical panhesiain the tyrannic administration of As Pisistratus. you know, Aristotle consideredPisistratusto be a humane and benelicent tyrant whose reign was very fruitful for Athens. And Aristotle gives the following accountof how Pisistratusmet a small landowner after he had imposed a ten percenttax on all produce: in often madeexpeditions personinto the ... fPisistratus] disputes betweenindicountry to inspect it and to settle viduals, that they might not come into the city and that' as their farms.It wasin one of the progresses neglect with the man had his adventure Pisistratus storygoes, the Rhet. l)82b20; Pol.l313bl5; Nir.1124b29,1165a29; 58.Cf.Aristotle,Eth. Rhet. At.1432b18.

of Hymettus, who was cultivating the spot afterwards known as "Tâx-free Farm." He saw a man digging and working at a very stony piece of ground, and being surprisedhe senthis attendantto askwhat he got out of this plot of land. 'Achesand pains,"said the man; "and that's what Pisistratus ought to have his tenth of." The man spoke without knowing who his questioner was; but Pisistratuswas so pleasedwith his frank speech fttanhesla] and his industry that he grantedhim exemption.se Sopanhesiaoccurshere in the monarchic situation. The word is also used by Aristotle in the Nicomachean a Etiics [Book IV ll24b28], not to characterize political practice or institution, but as a trait of the magnanimousman, the megalopsychos [peyaÀôyu1oç]. Some of the other characteristics of the magnanimousman are more or less related to the parrhesiastic character and attitude. For example, the megalopsychos courageous,but he is not one who likes danger so is much that he runs out to greet it, i.e., he is not "$tl"oÉvôuvoç." His courage is rational lll24b7-91. He prefers aletheiato doxa, truth to opinion. He does not like flatterers. And since he looks down on [ratcrQpovéiv] other men, he is "outspoken and frank" ILI24b28l. He usespanhesia to speak he the truth because is able to recognizethe faults of others: he is consciousof his own differencefrom them. of his own superiority. So you see that for Aristotle, panhesiais either a moralethical quality, or pertains to free speech as addressedto a monarch. Increasingly,thesepersonaland moral featuresof parhesiabecomemore pronounced.
59. Aristotle, Constitutionof Athens,Tians. E G. Kenyon, 16.

4. Panhesia the Careof the Self in


Socnarrc Pnnanzsn
I would now like to analyze a new form of panhesiawhich was emerging and developing even before Isocrates, Plato, and Aristotle. There are, of course,important similarities and analogous relationships between the political panhesia we have been examining and this new form of panhesia.But in spite of these similarities, a number of specific features,directly related to the figure ofSocrates,characterize and differentiate this new Socraticpanhesia. In selectinga testimony about Socrates a parrhesiastic as figure, I have chosen Plato's Laches (or "on Courage" [Ilepi avôpeiuç]); and this, for severalreasons. First, although this Platonic dialogue, the Laches,is rather short, the word parhesla appearsthree times [78a5, l79cl, lS9al]-which is rather a lot when one takesinto accounthow infrequently Plato uses the word. At the beginning of the dialogue it is also interesting to note that the different participants are characterized by their pathesi.a.Lysimachus and Melesias,two of the participants, say that they will speak their minds freely, using panhesin to confessthat they have done or accomplishednothing very important, glorious, or special in their own lives. And they make this confessionto two other older citizens, Laches and Nicias (both of them quite famous generals), the hope that in they, too, will speak openly and frankly-for they are old enough, influential enough, and glorious enough to be frank and not hide what they truly think. But this passage [178a5]is not the main one I would like to quote since it employs parrhesiain an everydaysense, and is not an instanceof Socratic parrhesia.



From a strictly theoretical poinr of view the dialogue is a failure becauseno one in the dialogue is able to give a rarional, true, and satisfactory definition of courage-which is the topic of the piece. But in spite of the fact that even Socrares himself is not able to give such a definition, ar rhe end of rhe dialogue Nicias, Laches, Lysimachus, and Melesias all agree that Socrates would be the best teacherfor their sons.And so Lysimachus and Melesias ask him to adopt this role. Socrares accepts, sayingthat everyoneshould try to take careofhimself and of his sons [201b4].And here you find a norion which, as some of you know, I like a lot: the concept of. "epimeleia heautotr," "care of the self." We have,then, I think, a movethe ment visible throughout this dialogue from the parrhesiastic figure of Socratesto the problem of the care of the self. Beforewe read the specificpassages the text that I would in like to quote, however, we need to recall the situation at the beginning of the dialogue.But since the Lachesis very complex and interwoven, I shall do so only briefly and schematically. Two elderly men, Lysimachus and Melesias, are concerned about the kind of education they should give to their sons. Both of them belong to eminent Athenian families; Lysimachusis the son of Aristeides"the Just" and Melesiasis the son of Thucydides the Elder. But although their own fathers were illustrious in their own day, Lysimachus and Melesiashave accomplishednothing very specialor glorious in their own lives: no important military campaigns,no significant political roles. They usepanhesia to admit this publicly. And they have also askedthemselves the question,How is it that from such goodgenos[Évoç], from such good stock, from such a noble family, they were both unable to distinguish themselves? Clearly, as their own experienceshows, having a high birth and belonging to a noble Athenian houseare not

suf{icient to endow someonewith the aptitude and the ability to assumea prominent position or role in the city. They realrze that something more is needed, viz., education. But what kind of education?\7hen we consider that the dramatic date of the Lachesis around the end of the Fifth Century, at a time when a great many individuals-most of them presenting themselvesas Sophists-claimed that they could provide young peoplewith a good education,we can recognize here a problematic which is common to a number of Platonic dialogues. The educational techniquesthat werebeing propoundedaround this time often dealtwith several aspects of education, e.g., rhetoric (learning how to addressa iury or a political assembly), various sophistic techniques,and occasionally military education and training. In Athens at this time there was also a maior problem being debatedregarding the best way to educateand train the infantry soldiers, who were largely inferior to the Spartan hoplites. And all of the political, social, and institutional concerns about education, which form the generalcontext ofthis dialogue,are related to the problem of panhesia. the political field we saw that there In was a need for a panhesiastes who could speak the truth about political institutions and decisions, and the problem there was knowing how to recognize such a truth-teller. In its basic form, this sameproblem now reappears the field of educain how then can tion. For ifyou yourselfare not well-educated, you decide what constitutesa good education?And if people are to be educated,they must receivethe truth from a competent teacher. But how can we distinguish the good, truthtelling teachers from the bad or inessentialones? It is in order to help them come to such a decision that Lysimachus and Melesius ask Nicias and Laches to witness a performance given by Stesilaus-a man who claims to be


F E A R L E s sS P E E c H

a teacher of hoplomachiafon]uopo,itcrl or the art of fighting with heavy arms. This teacher is an athlete, technician, actor, and artist. \flhich means that although he is very skillful in handling weapons, he does nor use his skill to actually fight the enemy,but only to make money by giving public perfor_ mancesand teaching the young men. The man is a kind of sophist for the martial arts.After seeinghis skills demonstrat_ ed in this public performance, however, neither Lysimachus nor Melesius is able to decide whether this sort of skill in fighting would constirute part of a good education. So they turn to two well-known figures of their time, Nicias and Laches,and ask their advice [l7Sa-lgtd]. Nicias is an experiencedmilitary general who won sever_ al victories on the battlefield, and was an important political leader.Laches is also a respectedgeneral, although he doesnot play as signilicant a role in Athenian politics. Both of them give their opinions about Stesilaus,demonstration, and it turns out that they arein completedisagreement regardingthe value of this military skill. Nicias thinks that this military technicianhas done well, and that his skill may be able pro_ ro vide the young with a good military education [lgle_lg2d]. Laches disagrees,and argues that the Spartans, who are the best soldiers in Greece,never have recourseto such teachers. Moreover,he thinks that Stesilaus not a soldier since is he has never won any real victories in battle Itg2d_IS4c]. Through this disagreement seethat not only ordinary citizens we with_ out any specialqualities are unable to decide what is the best kind of educarion,and who is able to teachskills worrh learning, but even those who have long military and political expe_ rience, like Nicias and Laches, cannot come to a unanimous decision. In the end, however, Nicias and Laches both agree that

despite their fame, their importanr role in Athenian affairs, their age, their experience,and so on, rhey should refer to Socrates-who has been there all along-to see what he thinks. And after Socrates reminds them that educationconcerns the care of the soul [85d], Nicias explains why he will allow his soul to be "tested" by Socrates, i.e., why he will play the Socratic parrhesiastic game. And this explanation of Nicias' is, I think, a portrayal of Socratesas a panhesiastes: NICIAS: You strike me as not being awarethat, whoever comesinto closecontactwith Socrates and has any talk with him face to face,is bound to be drawn round and round by him in the courseof the argument-though it may havestartedat first on a quite different theme-and cannotstop until he is led into giving an accountof himself,of the mannerin which he now spendshis days,and of the kind of life he has lived hitherto;and when oncehe hasbeenled into that, Socrates neverlet him go until will he has thoroughly and properly put all his ways to the test.Now I am accustomed him, and so I know that one to is bound to be thus treated by him, and further, that I myself shall certainlyget the sametreâtmentalso.F'or I delight, Lysimachus, conversing in with the man, and seeno harm in our being remindedofany pastor present misdoing:nay,one must needstake more carefulthought for the rest of one's life, if one doesnot fly from his words but is willing, as Solonsaid,and zealousto learn as long as one lives,and doesnot expectto get good sense the by mere arrival of old age.So to me there is nothing unusual, or unpleasanteither, in being tried and tested by Socrates; fact, I knew pretty well all the time that our in argumentwould not be about the boys if Socrates were


F L A R L E s SS P E E c H

present,but about ourselves. Let me thereforerepeatthat there is no obfection on my parr to holding a debatewith Socrates after the fashionthat he likes...60 Nicias' speech describes the parrhesiastic game of Socrates from the point of view of the one who is ,.tested.,'But unlike the parrhesiasrss who addressesthe demos the assem_ in bly, for example, here we have a parrhesiastic game which requires a personal, face to face relationship. Thus the begin_ ning of the quote states:..\ryhoever comes into close contact with Socrates and has any talk with him faceto face...,,[lg7e]. Socrates'interlocutor must get in touch with him, establish someproximity to him in order to play this parrhesiastic game. That is the lirst point. Secondly, in this relationship ro Socrates,the listener is led by Socrates'discourse. The passivity ofthe Socratichear_ er, however,is not the same kind of passivity as that of a lis_ tener in the Assembly.The passivityof a listener in the polit_ ical parrhesiastic gameconsistsin being persuaded what he by listens to. Here, the listener is led by the Socratic bgos into "giving an account"-"didonai /ogoz [ôrô6vcrt Àô1ov]"_of "himself, of the manner in which he now spendshis days,and of the kind of life he has lived hirherro', [lg7e--lgga].Because we are inclined to read such texts through the glassesof our Christian culture, however, we might interpret this description of the Socratic game as a practice where the one who is being led by Socrates'discourse must give an autobiographical account of his life, or a confessionof his faults. But such an interpretation would miss the real meaning of the text. For

60.Plato,Laches. Tians. Wl R. M. Lamb, lgTe-lggc

with similar descriptiotrs,rl when we compare this passage Socrates'method of examination-as in the Apologt, Alcibutht Major, or the Gorgias,where we also frnd the idea that to bc lctl is by the Socraticlogos to "give an account" ofoneselÊ-wc scc autohivery clearly that what is involved is not a confessional ography.In Plato's or Xenophon'sportrayalsof him, we nevcr requiring an examination ofconscienceor a conseeSocrates fessionof sins. Here, giving an account of your life, your àlo.s, is also not to give a narrative ofthe historical eventsthat have taken placein your life, but rather to demonstratewhether you are able to show that there is a relation between the rational discourse, the logos,you are able ro use, and the way that you gives form to live. Socrates inquiring into the way that /ogos is a person's style of life; for he is interested in discovering whether there is a harmonic relation between the two. Later on in this same dialogue [90d-194b] for example, when Socratesasks Laches to give the reason for his courage, he wânts not a narrative of Laches'exploits in the Peloponnesian which gives War,but for Lachesto attempt to disclosethe logos his courage.Socrates'role,then, rational, intelligible form to is to ask for a rational accountingofa person'slife. in This role is characterized the text as that ofa "basanos" or "touchstone" which teststhe degree of accord [Baocxvoç] between a person'slife and its principle of intelligibility or /ogos.'"...Socrates will never let [his listener] go until he has thoroughly and properly put all his ways to the test [nprv dv paoavioS rcx0rcr erf te rcri rcl.ôç ùæcvtcrl" [88a]. Thc refers to a "touchstone", i.e., a black stone Greek word basanos which is usedto test the genuineness gold by examining thc of streak left on the stone when "touched" by the gold in qucstion. Similarly, Socrates' "basanic" role enableshim to detcrmine the true nature of the relation between the logosand ôro.ç

N 4 i c h eF o u c a u l t l


of thosewho come into contactwith him.6' Then, in the secondpart of this quotation, Nicias explains that as a result of Socrates' examination,one becomes willing to care for the manner in which he lives rhe rest of his life, wanting now to live in the bestpossibleway; and this willingnesstakesthe form ofazeal to learn and to educateoneselfno matter what one's age. Laches' speech, which immediately follows, describes Socrates'parrhesiastic game from the perspective of one who has inquired into Socrates'roleas a touchstone.For the problem arisesof knowing how we can be sure that Socrates himselfis a goodbasanos testing the relation betweenlogos for and. àiosin his listener's life. LACHES: I have but a singlemind, Nicias, in regardto discussions, if you like, a double râther than a single or one. For you might think me a lover, and yet also a hater, of discussions: when I hear a man discussing for virtue or any kind of wisdom, one who is truly a man and worthy of his argument,I am exceedingly delighred;I take the speakerand his speechtogether, and observehow they

sort and harmonizewith each other. Such a man is exactly what I understandby "musical"-he has tuned himself with the fairest harmony,not that of a lyre or other entertaining instrument, but has made a true concord of his own life between his words and his deeds, not in the Ionian, no, nor in the Phrygian nor in the Lydian, but simply in the Dorian mode, which is the sole Hellenic harmony. Such a man makes me reioice with his utterance,and anyonewould iudge me then a lover of discussion, so eagerlydo I take in what he says:but a man who showsthe opposite charactergives me pain, and the better he seemsto speak, the more I am pained, with the that I am judgeda haterofdiscussion. result,in this case, I Now of Socrates'words have no experience'but formerly, I fancy, I have made trial of his deeds; and there I found him living up to any fine words however freely So spoken. if he hasthat gift aswell, his wish is mine, and by I should be very glad to be cross-examined such a man, and should not chafeat learnins.62 the question of As you can see,this speechin part answers the personal qualities, how to determine the visible criteria, which entitle Socratesto assume the role of the basanos of other people's lives. From information given at the beginning of the Lacheswe have learned that by the dramatic date is ofthe dialogue,Socrates not very well known, that he is not regardedas an eminent citizen, that he is younger than Nicias in and Laches,and that he has no specialcompetence the field of military training-with this exception: he exhibited great

61. In the Gorgias,Plato writes: "SOC. If my soul were gold, Callicles, don't you think I'd delight in finding a rouchstone to put that gold to the test?The best rouchsrone available,one which if I applied it and the stone agreed with me that my soul had been well cared f'or, I might be assured at last that I sufficed and needed no orhcr test? CAI-. Vhy ask that question, Socrates?SOC. I'll tell you. I think I've becn lucky ro meet a real godsend in you. CAL. Why so? SOC. BecauseI well know that should you agreewith me in the things my soul believcs, they are then the very truth. For I think that whoever is to test a soul sulliciently about correctnessof life or the lack ofit needs three things, ofwhich you have: knowlege, kind regard, and fiankness [ncrpprloiu]." 486a487a; R. E. Allen translation.

62.Plato.Laches. Tians. V/. R. M. Lamb, l88c-189a.


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courage in the battle at Delium6s where Laches was the commanding general. Why, then, would two famous and older generals submit to Socrates' cross-examinations? Laches,who is not as interested in philosophical or political discussions, and who prefers deedsto words throughout the dialogue (in contrast to Nicias), gives the answer.For he saysthat there is a harmonic relation betweenwhat Socrates saysand what he does, between his words (logoi) and his deeds(erga).Thus not only is Socrates himself able to give an accountof his own life, such an account is already visible in his behavior since rhere is not the slightestdiscrepancy betweenwhat he saysand what he does. He is a "mousihos aner" fltor)rrxoç cwrlp]. In Greek culture, and in most of Plato's other dialogues,the phrase "mousikos aner" denotes a person who is devoted to the Muses-a cultured person of the liberal arts. Here the phrase refersto someonewho exhibits a kind of ontological harmony where the /ogos and àlosof such a person is in harmonic accord. And this harmonic relation is also a Dorian harmony. As you know, there were four kinds of Greek harmony:6a the Lydian mode which Plato dislikes because it is too solemn; the Phrygian mode which Plato associates wirh the passions;the Ionian mode which is too soft and effeminatel and the Dorian mode which is courageous. The harmony between word and deed in Socrates'life is Dorian, and was manifested in the courage he showed at Delium. This harmonic accord is what distinguishes Socrates from a sophist: the sophist can give very fine and beautiful discourseson courage,but is not courageoushimself. This accord

is also why Laches can say of Socrates:"I found him living up to any fine words however freely spoken []"ô^pv Kci tdo-nç '[oppnotc[q]." Socratesis able to use rational, ethically valuable, fine, and beautiful discourse; but unlike the sophist, he what he saysaccords canusepanhesia and speakfreely because what he thinks, and what he thinks accordsexactexactly with ly with what he does. And 5e $sç1x1s5-u'ho is truly free and courageous---{antherefore function as a parrhesiastic figure. Just as was the casein the political field, the parrhesiastic the figure ofSocratesalso discloses truth in speaking,is couraand confronts his listener's geousin his life and in his speech, opinion in a critical manner. But Socratic panhesin differs from political pathesi.ain a number of ways. It appearsin a personalrelationship betweentwo human beings,and not in or to rhe panhesiastes'relation the demos the king' And in additruth, and tion to the relationshipswe noticed between/ogos, a with Socrates new elementnow couragein politicalpanhesia, emerges, viz., bios.Bros is the focus of Socratic panhesia. On relation is Socrates'or the philosopher's side, the bios-logos parrhesiastic role, a Dorian harmony which grounds Socrates' and which, at the same time, constitutesthe visible criterion or for his function as the basanos touchstone.On the interbiovlogosrelation is disclosed when the locutor's side, the interlocutor gives an account of his life' and its harmony testin Since he possesses his relation ed by contactwith Socrates. to truth all the qualities that need to be disclosed in the intercan test the relation to truth ofthe interloculocutor, Socrates The aim of this Socraticparrhesiasticactivity' tor's existence. then, is to lead the interlocutor to the choice of that kind of life (bioù that will be in Dorian-harmonic accord with /ogos, virtue, courage,and truth. In Euripides' Ion we saw the problematizarion of panhcsia

63.Cf.Plato, Symposium,22la-b; Laches, l8lb,189b. 64.Cf.Plato, Republic,Ill,3g8c-399e; Aristotle, Polildcs, 7. VIII,



in the form of a game between /ogos, genos trurh, and. (birth) in the relations between the gods and mortalsl and Ion's parrhesi_ astic role was grounded in a mythical genealogy descended from Athens: parhesia was the civic right of the wel-born cir_ izen of Athens. In the realm of political institutions rhe prob_ lematization of panhesiainvolved a game between logos,truth, and tnmos (law); and the parhesiasres was needed to disclose those truths which would ensure the salvation or welfare of the crty.Parrhesia here was the personal quality ofa courageousorator and political leader,or the personal quality ofan advisor to the king. And now with Socratesthe problemarization of par_ rhesiatakes the form of a game between /ogos,truth, and,bbs (life) in the realm of a personal teaching relarion between rwo human beings. And the rruth rhat the parrhesiastic discourse disclosesis rhe trurh of someone,slife, i.e., the kind of relation someone has to truth: how he constituteshimself as someone who has to know the truth through mathesis, and how this rela_ tion to truth is ontologically and ethically manifest in his own life. Panhesia, in turn, becomes an ontological characteristic of thebasarns, whoseharmonic relation to truth can function as a touchstone.The obiective of the cross-examinationsSocrates conducts in his role ofthe touchstone, then, is to test the specilic relation to truth of the other's existence. In Euripides' fon, parrhesia was opposed to Apollo's silence; in the political sphere parhesia was opposed to the demos'will, or to those who flatter the desiresof the majority or the monarch. In this third, Socratic-philosophicalgame, panhesiais opposedto self-ignoranceand the false teachings of the sophists. Socrates' role as a basanosappears very clearly in the Laches; but in other Platonic rexrs-the Apolop, for exam_ ple-this role is presented a mission assigned Socrates as to by

viz., Apollo-the samegod who the oracular deity at Delphi,6s kept silent in lon. And just as Apollo's oracle was open to all who wished to consult it, so Socratesoffered himself up to The anyoneas a questioner.66 Delphic oraclewas also so enigmatic and obscurethat one could not understand it without knowing what sort of question one was asking,and what kind of meaning the oracular pronouncement could take in one's discourserequires thât one overcome life. Similarly, Socrates' about one's own situation. But, ofcourse, there self-ignorance are maior differences.For example, the oracle foretold what would happen to you, whereas Socraticpanhesiameans to disclosewho you are-not your relation to future events,but your presentrelation to truth. I do not mean to imply that there is any strict chronological progressionamong the various forms of panheslawe have noted. Euripides died in 407 B.C. and Socrateswas put to death in 399 B.C. In ancient culture the continuation of ideas and themes is also more pronounced. And we are also quite limited in the number of documentsavailablefrom this period. So there is no precise chronology.The forms of panhesia a we seein Euripides did not generate very long tradition. And as the Hellenistic monarchies grew and developed,political panhesiaincreasinglyassumedthe form of a personalrelation betweenthe monarch and his advisors,thereby coming closer to the Socratic form. Increasedemphasiswas placed on the and the moral educationof the king. royal art of statesmanship And the Socratic type of panhesiahad a long radition through the Cynics and other Socratic Schools. So the divisions are almost contemporary when they appear,but the historical ..4 65.Cf.Plato, polog,2la-21b,33c. 66.Ibid., 1lb.



destiniesof the three are not the same. In Plato, and in what we know of Socrates through Plato, a maior problem concerns the attempt to determine how to bring the politicalpanhesia involving logos, truth, and rromos so that it coincides with the ethical panhesia involving /ogos, truth, and bios.How can philosophical trurh and moral virtue relate to the city through the nomos? You seethis issue in the Republic, and in the Laws. There is Apologt, the Crito, the a very interesting text in the Laws, for example, where Plato says that even in the city ruled by good laws there is still a need for someone who will usepanhesia to tell the citizens what moral conduct they must observe.6T Plato distinguishes between the Guardians of the Laws and the parthesiasfes, who does not monitor the application of the laws, but, like Socrates, speaksthe truth about the good of the city, and gives advicefrom an ethical,philosophicalstandpoint.And, asfar as I knoq it is the only text in Plato where the one who usespdrrhesiais a kind of political figure in the field of the law. In the Cynic tradition, which also derives from Socrates, the problematic relation belween nomosand àioswill become a direct opposition.For in this tradition, the Cynic philosopher is regardedas the only one capableof assumingthe role of the

And, as we shall see in the caseof Diogenes' he parhesiastes. must adopt a permanentnegativeand critical attitude towards any kind of political institution, and towards any kind of nomos. The last time we met we analyzed some texts from Plato's of where we saw the emergence'with Socrates, a new Laches previous "philosophic al" panhesia very different from the In fbrms we examined.6s the Lacheswe had a game with five main players.Two of them, Lysimachus and Melesius, were well-born Athenian citizens from noble houses who were unable to assumea parrhesiasticrole-for they did not know how to educatetheir own children. So they turned to a general and a political statesman'Lachesand Nicias, who were also Laches and Nicias, in unable to play the role of panhesiastes' who appears turn, were obliged to appealfor help to Socrates, 'We see in these transitional as the real parrhesiasticfigure' role from of the parrhesiastic displacement movesa successive political leader-who formerthe well-born Athenian and the Tâking the the ly possessed role-to the philosopher,Socrates' as Laches our point ofdeparture' we can now observein GrecoRoman culture the rise and developmentof this new kind of panhesinwhich, I think, can be characterized as follows' isphilosophical,and hasbeen put into First, thisparrhesia practicefor centuriesby the philosophers'Indeed,a large part of the philosophical activity that transpired in Greco-Roman culture required playing certain parrhesiastic games' Very schematically,I think that this philosophical role involved three types of parrhesiastic activity, all of them related to one

67. Plato writes: "...there are other matters which make no small difference, about which it is diffrcult to be persuasive, and which are in fact the task of the god, if it were somehow possible to get the orders themselves from him; as things stand now, what is required, in all probability, is some daring human being, who by giving unusual honor to oulspokenness [parrhesial wlll say what in his opinion is best for the city and the citizens. Speaking before an audience ofcormpt souls, he will order what is fitting and becoming to the whole political regime; opposing the greatest desires, and having no human ally, all alone will he follow reason alone." [Ifte laæs. Tians. Thomas L. Pangle, Book VIII,835c1


1983. 2l Lecture: November


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another.(l) Insofar as the philosopher had to discover and to teachcertain truths about the world, nature, etc., he assumed an epistemicrole. (2) Tàking a stand towardsthe city, the laws, political institutions, and so on, required, in addition, a political role. (3) And parrhesiasticactivity also endeavoredto elaboratethe nature of the relationships between truth and of one's style of life, or truth and an ethics and aesthetics the in Panhesiaas it appears the field ofphilosophical activiself. ty in Greco-Roman culture is not primarily a concept or theme, but a practicewhich tries to shapethe specific relations individuals have to themselves.And I think that our own moral subiectivity is rooted,at leastin part, in thesepractices. I More precisely, think that the decisivecriterion which idenis tifres the porrhesiastes not to be found in his birth, nor in his but citizenship,nor in his intellectual competence, in the harmony which exists between his logosand his àios. Secondly, the target of this new parhesia is not to persuadethe Assembly,but to convince someonethat he must rakecareof himself and of others; and this meansthat he must hk change life.This theme of changingone'slife, of conversion, very important from the Fourth Century B.C. to the becomes to beginningsofChristianity. It is essential philosophicalparrhesiastic practices.Of course conversion is not completely different from the changeof mind that an orator,using hisparwished to bring about when he askedhis fellow citizens ràesrh, to wake up, to refuse what they previously accepted,or to accept what they previously refused. But in philosophical practice the notion of changing one's mind takes on a more generaland expandedmeaning since it is no longer iust a matter of altering one's belief or opinion, but of changing one's style of life, one's relation to others, and one's relation to oneself.

Thirdly, these new parrhesiasticpractices imply a complex set of connections between the self and truth. For not to only are thesepracticessupposed endow the individual with self-knowledge,this self-knowledgein turn is supposedto grant access to truth and further knowledge. The circle implied in knowing the truth about oneselfin order to know the truth is characteristic of parrhesiastic practice since the F-ourthCentury,and has been one of the problematic enigmas of \?estern Thought---c.g., as in Descartesor Kant. And a final point I would like to underscoreabout this philosophical panhesia is that it has recourse to numerous techniques quite different from the techniques of persuasive discoursepreviously utilized; and it is no longer specifically linked to the agora,or to the king's court, but can now be utilized in numerous diverseplaces.

Txe PnlcncE oF Pannnesn
In this sessionand next week-in the last seminar meetingfrom the standI would like to analyzephilosophicalpanhesia point of its prâctices.By the "practice" of panhesiaI mean two things: First, the luseof panhesio in specific types of human relationships (which I shall addressthis evening); and secondly, the proceduresand techniquesemployed in such relationships (which will be the topic of our last session). In Human Relationships Because the lack of time, and to assistin the clarity of the of presentation, would like to distinguish three kinds of human I relationshipswhich are implied in the use of this new philoBut, of course,this is only a general schema, sophicalpanhe,sia.


,,,11:js pEEcH S

for there are severalintermediateforms. Fftst, panhesraoccurs as an activity in the framework of small groups of people, or in the context of community life. Secondlgparrfresincan be seen in human relationships occuring in the framework of public life. And finally, panhesia occurs in the context of individual personal relationships. More specifically, we can say that panhesiaas a feature of community life was highly regarded by the Epicureans; panhesia as a public activity or public demonstrationwas a significant aspectof Cynicism, as well as that type of philosophy that was a mixture of Cynicism and Stoicism; andpanhesi.a an aspect as of personal relationships is found more frequently either in Stoicism or in a generalized common Stoicism characterisor tic of such writers as Plutarch. Community life Although the Epicureans,with the importance they gave to friendship, emphasized community life more than other philosophersat this time, nonetheless one can also find some Stoic groups, as well as Stoic or Stoico-Cynic philosophers, who actedas moral and political advisorsto variouscirclesand aristocraticclubs. For example,Musonius Rufus was spiritual advisor to Nero's cousin, Rubellius Plautus, and his circle; and the Stoico-Cynic philosopher Demetrius was advisor to a liberal anti-aristocratic group around Thrasea Paetus.6e Thrasea Paetus, a Roman senator, committed suicide after being condemnedto death by the senateduring Nero's reign. And Demetrius was the r'egisseur, would say, of his suicide. 1




So besidesthe community life of the Epicureans there are othcr intermediate forms. There is also the very interesting .ase of Epictetus.Epictetus was a Stoic for whom the practice ol speakingopenly and frankly was also very important. He rlirecteda school about which we know a few things from the Iour surviving volumes of Epictetus' Discourses recorded by as Arrian. \ùte know, for example, that Epictetus' school was locatedat Nicopolis in a permanent structure which enabled students to share in a real community life.70Public lectures and teachingsessions were given wherethe public was invited, and where individuals could ask questions-although sometimes such individuals were mocked and twitted by the masters.\ù7e also know that Epictetus conducredboth public conversations with his disciplesin front ofa class,and private consultationsand interviews. His school was a kind of école normale for those who wanted to become philosophers or moral advisors. So when I tell you that philosophical panhesia occurs as an activity in three types of relationship,it must be clear that the forms I have chosenare only guiding examples;the actual practiceswere, of course)much more complicated and interrelated. First, then, the exampleof the Epicurean groups regarding the practice of panhesiain communiry life. Unfortunately, we know very few things about the Epicurean communiries, and even less about the parrhesiasticpracticesin rhesecommunities-which explains the brevity of my exposirion. But we do have a texr entirled "llepi ncrppqorûq" [On Frank Speakingl written by Philodemus (who is recording the lec-

69. Cf. Michel Foucault, Le Souci de soi, 67-68; Cora E. Lutz, Musonius Rrfus. l4ff.

70. Cf. B. L. Hijmans,lskesis:

Noteson Epictetus' Educational System.


I | ^kl I ss SpEEcH

tures [o1ol"cri]of Zeno of Sidon).7tThetext is not completein its entirety,but the existing manuscript piecescome from the ruins of the Epicurean library discovered at Herculaneum near the end of the Nineteenth Century. \7hat has been preserved is very fragmentary and rather obscurel and I must confess that without some commentary from the Italian scholar, Marcello Gigante, I would not have understood much of this fragmentary Greek text.i2 I would like to underline the following points from this treatise. First, Philodemus regardspanhesia not only as a quality, virtue, or personal attitude' but also as a technecomparable both to the art of medicine and to the art of piloting a boat.il As you know, the comparison between medicine and navigation is a very traditional one in Greek culture. But even without this referenceto panhesin,the comparison of medicine and navigation is interesting for the following two reasons. of (l) The reason why the pTlot'stechne navigation is simphysician's techne medicine is that in both cases, of ilar to the the necessarytheoretical knowledge required also demands practical training in order to be useful. Furthermore, in order to put thesetechniquesto work' one has to take into account not only the generalrules and principles of the art, but also particular data which are alwaysspecific to a given situation.

One must take into accountthe particular circumstances, and rrlsowhat the Greeks called the kairos frutp6q], or "the critical rnoment."74 The concept of. the kairos-ràe decisive or crucial moment or opportunity-has alwayshad a significant role in (ireek thought for epistemological, moral, and technical rea\ù(/hat of interesthere is that sincePhilodemusis now sons.Ts is panhesia with piloting and medicine, it is also associating being regarded as a technique which deals with individual cases, specific situations, and the choice of the kairosor decisive moment.76 Utilizing our modern vocabulary,we can say that navigation, medicine, and the practice of.panhesia are all "clinical techniques." (2) Another reasonwhy the Greeksoften associated medicine and navigation is that in the caseofboth techniques,one person (the pilot or physician) must make the decisions,give orders and instructions, exercisepower and authority, while the others-the crew, the patient, the staff-must obey if the desiredend is to be achieved.Hence navigation and medicine are also both related to politics. For in politics the choice of the opportunity, the best moment, is alsocrucial; and someone

1914. Ed. flep't 71.Philodemus, ncrppqotc4. A. Olivieri,
72. Cf. Marcello Gigante, "Philodème: Sur la liberté de parole"; "Motivi paideutici nell'opera filodemea sulla libertà di parola"; and "'Philosophia Medicans' in Filodemo." 73. Gigante writes: "Les caractéristiques qui distinguent les technai cro1aonror comme la médecine et I'art du nautonier chez Aristote sont les mêmes que celles qui, chez Zénon-Philodème, définissent la panhcsia" ["Philodème: Sur la liberté de parole," 206].

74. ln the Nicomachaen Ethirs Aristotle writes: ". . . matters concerned with conduct and questions ofwhat is good for us have no fixity, any more than matters ofhealth. The general account being ofthis nature, the account of particular casesis yet more lacking in exactness;for they do not fall under any art or set of precepts,but the agentsthemselvesmust in each caseconsider what is appropriate to the occasion [npôç tôu rorpôv], as happens rulso the art of medicine or of navigation." [Tians. \f. D. Ross, 1104a4-9] in 75. Cf. Michel Foucault, -LUsagedes plaisirs,6S-70. 76. Fragment 226 of Democritus also associates parhesia with kairos: ''.r\nrov èÀfl-r0epir1ç nappqor4, Éuôuvoç ôb fi rori rcrrpoÛ ôrct.lvtrrorç" 1"I;reedomofspeech is the sign offreedom; but the danger lies in discernrng the right occasion"-K. Freeman translation]. Cf. Hermann Diels, Dæ l;rdgmenteder Vorsohratiher, Vol. l, 190.



is also supposed to be more competent than the others-and therefore has the right to give the orders that the others must obey.7? politics, then, there are indispensible techniques In consideredas the art of which lie at the root of statesmanship governing people. If I mention this ancient affinity between medicine, navigation, and politics, it is in order to indicate that with the addition of the parrhesiastic techniques of "spiritual guidwas constituted ance," a corpus ofinterrelated clinical technai of during the Hellenistic period. Of course,the techne piloting But navigationis primarily of metaphoricalsignificance.. an or analysisof the various relations which Greco-Romanculture believedexisted betweenthe three clinical activities of mediwould be important' cine, politics, and the practiceof panhesia centuries later, Gregory of Nazianzus [c. A.D. Several 329-3891 would call spiritual guidancethe "technique oftechniques"-"crs artium," "technetechnon"[tê1vr1 tê1vtov]. This expressionis signifi cant since statesmanshipor political techne technon the Royal Art. or was previously regarded ^s the techne Century But from the Fourth Century A.D. to the Seventeenth in Europe, the expression"technetechnon"usually refers to spiritual guidance as the most significant clinical technique. in of as This characterization panhesia atechne relation to medpolitics is indicative of the transformation icine, piloting, and of panhesiainto a philosophicalpractice.From the physician's art of governing patients and the king's art of governing the city and its subjects,we move to the philosopher'sart of governing himself and acting as a kind of "spiritual guide" for other people.

Another aspect of Philodemus' text concerns the referencesit contains about the sructure of the Epicurean communities; but commentalors on Philodemus disagreeabout the exact form, complexity, and hierarchical organization of such communities. Derùflittthinks that the existing hierarchy was very well-established and complex; whereas Gigante thinks that it was much simpler.Ts seemsthat there were at It least two categoriesof teachersand two types of teaching in the Epicurean schoolsand groups. There was "classroom" teaching where a teacheraddressed a group of students; and there was also instruction in the form of personal interviews where a teacher would give advice and precepts to individual community members. Vhereas the lower-ranked teachers only taught classes, the higher-level teachers both taught classes and gavepersonal interviews. Thus a distinction was drawn between generalteaching and personal instruction or guidance. This distinction is not a difference in content, as between theoretical and practical subject mattersespeciallysince studies in physics, cosmology,and natural law had ethical significancefor the Epicureans.Nor is it a difference in instruction contrasting ethical theory with its practical application. Rather the difference marks a distinction in the pedagogical relationship between teacherand disciple or student. In the Socratic situation, there was one procedure which enabled the interlocutor to discoverthe truth about himself,the relation of his ôlosto logos;and this same procedure, at the same time,

Politis, 1124b29. 77.Cf. Aristotle,

78. Cf. Norman De\ùtitt, "Organization and Procedure in Epicurean Groups," "Epicurean Contubernium," and, Epicunts and His Philosophy [Chapter V: The New School in Athens]; Marcello Gigante, "Filodemo sulla libertà di parola," and "Motivi paideutici nell'opera filodemea sulla libertà di parola."

[ , 4 i c h eF o u c a u l t l

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also enabled him to gain accessto additional truths (about the world, ideas,the nature of the soul, and so on)- \7ith the Epicurean schools,however,there is the pedagogicalrelation of guidance where the master helps the disciple to discover the truth about himself; but there is now, in addition, a form of "authoritarian" teaching in a collective relation where someone speaksthe truth to â group ofothers. These two types ofteachculture. And in the ing becamea permanent feature of \ùÛestern Epicurean schoolswe know that it was the role of the "spiritual guide" for others that was more highly valued that that of group lecturer. I do not wish to conclude the discussionof Philodemus' text without mentioning a practice which they engagedinwhat we might call "mutual confession"in a group. Some of or the fragmentsindicate that there were group sessions meetof the community members in turn would ings where each 'We disclose their thoughts, faults, misbehavior, and so on. know very little about such meetings, but referring to this He practicePhilodemususesan interestingexpression. speaks practice as "the salvation by one 2\s1hs7"-"1e /i' of this o{t(eo0crt].?'gThe word allelon sozesthai" lro ôt' crÀ),',1l.rov sozesthai-to saveoneselÊ-in the Epicurean tradition means to to gain access a good, beautiful, and happy life. It doesnot to any kind of afterlife or divine ludgment. [n one'sown refer salvation,other members of the Epicurean community [The Garden] have a decisive role to play as necessaryagents enabling one to discoverthe truth about oneself,and in helpto ing one to gain access a happy life. Hence the very impor-

tant emphasison friendship in the Epicurean groups. Publiclife Now I would like to move on to the pracrice of panhesiain public life through the example of the Cynic philosophers. In the caseof the Epicureancommunities, we know very little about their style of life but have some idea of their doctrine as it is expressedin various texts. tù(riththe Cynics the situation is exactly reversedl for we know very little about Cynic doctrine-even if there everwas such an explicit doctrine. But we do possess numerous testimoniesregarding the Cynic way of life. And there is nothing surprising about this stateof affairs; for even though Cynic philosophers wrore books just like other philosophers,they were far more interestedin choosing and practicing a certain way of life. A historical problem concerningthe origin ofCynicism is this. Most of the Cynics from the First Century B.C. and thereafter refer to either Diogenes or Antisthenes as the founder ofthe Cynic philosophy; and through thesefounders of Cynicism they relate rhemselves back to the teachingsof Socrates.s0 According to Farrand Sayrersr however,the Cynic Sect appearedonly in the SecondCentury 8.C., or two centÙte turies after Socrates'death. might be a bit skepticalabout a traditional explanation given for the rise of the Cynic Sects-an explanation which has been given so often to account for so many other phenomena-but it is that Cynicism is a negative form of aggressiveindividualism which arose with the collapseof the political structuresof the ancient

79. Philodemus, flepi Le Souci de soi,67.

ncrpprloicrç, Fragment 36' 17; cf. Foucault,

80. Cf. DiogenesLaertius, VI, 2. 8I . Cf. Farrand Sayre,Diogenes Sinope,A Study of GreekCynicism. of

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world. A more interesting account is given by Sayre, who explains the appearance the Cynics on the Greek philoof of sceneas a consequence expandingconquests the of sophical Macedonian Empire. More specifically, he notes that with various Indian philosophies-especialAlexander'sconquests ly the monastic and asceticteachingsof Indian Sectslike the Gymnosophists-becamemore familiar to the Greeks. Regardless what we can determine about the origins of of Cynicism, it is a fact that the Cynics were very numerous and influential from the end of the First Century B.C. to the Fourth Century A.D. Thus in A.D. 165 Lucian, who did not with these vermin, like the Cynics, writes: "The city s\ryarms particularly those who profess the tenets of Diogenes, It Antisthenes, and Crates."82 seems,in fact, that the selfstyled"Cynics" were so numerousthat Emperor Julian, in his attempt to revive classicalGreek culture, wrote a lampoon and againstthem scorning their ignorance,their coarseness, portraying them as a danger for the Empire and for GrecoRoman culture.srOne of the reasonswhy Julian treated the to Cynics so harshly was their general resemblance the early Christians.And some of the similarities may have been more than mere superficial resemblance.For example,Peregrinus (a well known Cynic at the end of the SecondCentury A.D.) was by a considered kind of saint by his Cynic followers,especially those who regarded his death as a heroic emulation of the deathof Heracles[Hercules].To display his Cynic indifference [ôôrdQopia] to death, Peregrinuscommitted suicide by cremating himself immediately following the Olympic Gamesof A.D. 167. Lucian, who witnessedthe event, gives a satirical,
82. Lucian. "The Runawavs." Tians. A. M. Harmon. I16. 83. Cf. Julian, "To the Uneducated Cynics."

tlerisive account.s4 Julian was also disappointed that the Oynics were not able to representancient Greco-Romancul_ ture, for he hoped that there would be something like a popu_ lar philosophical movement which would compete with Christianity. The high value which the Cynics attributed ro a person's way of life doesnot mean that they had no interest in theoret_ ical philosophy, but reflecrs their view that the manner in which a person lived was a touchstone of his relation to truth-as we saw was also the casein the Socratic tradition, The conclusion they drew from this Socratic idea, however, was that in order to proclaim the truths they acceptedin a manner that would be accessible everyone,they thought to that their teachingshad to consisr in a very public, visible, spectacular, provocative) and sometimes scandalousway of life. The Cynics thus raught by way of examplesand the expla_ nations associated with them. They wanted their own lives to be a blazon of essentialtruths which would then serve as a guideline, or as an example for others to follow. But there is nothing in this Cynic emphasison philosophy as an art of life which is alien to Greek philosophy. So even if we accept Sayre'shlpothesis abour the Indian philosophical influence on Cynic doctrine and practice, we must still recognizethat the Cynic attirude is, in its basic form, just an extremely radi_ cal version of the very Greek conception of the relationship between one's way of life and knowledge of the truth. The Cynic idea rhar a person is nothing else but his relation to truth, and that this relation to truth takes shape or is given Ibrm in his own life--that is completely Greek.

s.l. Cf. Lucian, "The Passing of peregrinus."



In the Platonic, Aristotelian, and Stoic traditions, philosophers referred mainly to a doctrine, text, or at least to some theoretical principles for their philosophy. In the Epicureantradition, the followersofEpicurus refer both to a doctrine and also to the personalexampleset by Epicurus,whom every Epicurean tried to imitate. Epicurus originated the doctrine and wasalso a personilicationof it. But now in the Cynic for tradition, the main references the philosophy are not to the texts or doctrines, but to exemplary lives. Personal examples but in the were also important in other philosophical schools, Cynic movement-where there were no established texts, no settled, recognizable doctrine-reference was always made to certain real or mythical personalities who were taken to be the were sources Cynicism as a mode of life. Such personalities of rhe starting point for Cynic reflection and commentary. The mythical characters referred to included Heracles [Hercules], Odysseus[Ulysses],and Diogenes. Diogenes was an actual, historical figure, but his life became so legendary that he developedinto a kind of myth as anecdotes,scandals,etc., were added to his historical life. About his actual life we do not know all that much, but it is clear that he becamea kind of philosophical hero. Plato, Aristorle, Zeno of Citium, et al., were philosophical authors and authorities, for example;but they were not consideredheroes.Epicurus was both a philosophicalauthor and treatedby his followers as a kind ofhero. But Diogenes was primarily a heroic figure. The idea that a philosopher'slife should be exemplaryand heroic is important in understanding the relationship of Cynicism to Christianity, as well as for understanding Cynic panhesia as a public activity.

This brings us to Cynicpanhesia.s5 three main types The practice utilized by the Cynics were: (l) critiof parrhesiastic cal preaching; (2) scandalousbehavior; and (3) what I shall call the "provocativedialogue." First, the critical preaching of the Cynics. Preaching is a form of continuous discourse. And, as you know, most of the early philosophers-especially the Stoics-would occasionally deliver speecheswhere they presented their doctrines. Usually,however,they would lecture in front of a rather small audience.The Cynics, in contrast,disliked this kind of elitist exclusionand preferredto address largecrowd. For example, a they liked to speakin a theater,or at a placewhere peoplehad gatheredfor a feast,religious event,athletic contest,etc. They would somelimesstand up in the middle of a theater audience and deliver a speech. This public preachingwas not their own innovation, for we have testimonies of similar practices as early as the Fifth Century B.C. Someof the Sophistswe seein the Platonic dialogues,for example,also engagein preaching to some extent. Cynic preaching,however,had its own specific characteristics, and is hisrorically significant since it enabled philosophical themes about one's way of life to becomepopular, i.e., to come to the attention of people who stood outside the philosophical elect. From this perspective, Cynic preaching about freedom, the renunciation of luxury, Cynic criticisms of political institutions and existing moral codes, and so on, also opened the way for some Christian themes.But Christian proselytesnot only spokeabout themes which were often similar to the Cynics; they also took over the practiceofpreaching.

85. Cf. Giuseppe Scarpat, Parrlresis, 62-69 lLa panhesia cinical.


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Preaching is still one of the main forms of truth-telling practicedin our society,and it involves the ideâ that the truth must be told and taught not only to the best membersof the society,or to an exclusivegroup, but to everyone. There is, however,very little positive doctrine in Cynic preaching: no direct affirmation of the good or bad. Instead, the Cynics refer to freedom (eleutheia) and self-sufficiency any kind of (autarkeia) the basic criteria by which to assess as behavior or mode of life. For the Cynics, the main condition self-sufficiencyor indepenfor human happinessis autarhein, dence,where what you need to have or what you decideto do is dependenton nothing other than you yourself. As a consequence-since the Cynics had the most radical of attitudesthey preferreda completelynatural life-style.A natural life was introduced by supposedto eliminate all of the dependencies so on. Consequently, civilization, opinion, and culture,society, most of their preaching seems to have been directed against social institutions, the arbitrarinessof rules of law, and any sort oflife-style that was dependentupon such institutions or laws. In short, their preaching was against all social institutions insofar as such institutions hindered one's freedom and independence. Cynic panhesla also had recourse to scandalousbehavior or attitudeswhich called into questioncollectivehabits, opinions, standards of decency, institutional rules, and so on. were used.One of them was the inversion Severalprocedures of roles, as can be seen from Dio Chrysostom's Fourth Discourse where the famous encounter between Diogenes and Alexander is depicted. This encounter, which was often referredto by the Cynics, doesnot take place in the privacy of Alexander's court but in the street' in the open. The king stands up while Diogenes sits back in his barrel. Diogenes

ordersAlexander to step out ofhis light so that he can bask in the sun. Ordering Alexander to step aside so that the sun's light can reach Diogenes is an affirmation of the direct and natural relation the philosopher has to the sun, in contrast to the mythical genealogywhereby the king, as descended from a god, was supposed personify the sun. to The Cynics also employed the technique of displacing or transposinga rule from a domain where the rule was accepted to a domain where it was not in order to show how arbitrary the rule was. Once, during the athletic contests and horseracesof the Isthmian festival, Diogenes-who was bothering everyonewith his frank remarks-took a crown of pine and put it on his head as if he had been victorious in an athletic competition. And the magistrates were very happy about this gesturebecause they thought it was,at last, a good occasionto punish him, to excludehim, to get rid of him. But he explained that he placed a crown upon his head becausehe had won a much more difficult victory against poverty, exile, desire, and his own vices than athletes who were victorious in wrestling,running, and hurling a discus.86 And later on during games,he saw two horsesfighting and kicking each other the until one of them ran off. So Diogenes went up and put a crown on the headof the horsewho stood its ground.87 These two symmetrical displacements have the effect of raising the question:Iflhat are you really doing when you award someone with a crown in the Isthmian games?For if the crown is awardedto someoneas a moral victory then Diogenes deserves a crown. But if it is only a question of superior physical

86.Cf.Dio Chrystosom, Ninth or Isthmian Discourse," 10-13. "The 87. Ibid.. 22.



strength,then there is no reasonwhy the horse should not be given a crown. Cynic panhesia in its scandalousaspectsalso utilized the practiceofbringing togethertwo rules ofbehavior which seem contradictory and remote from one another. For example, regarding the problem of bodily needs.You eat. There is no scandalin eating, so you can eat in public (although, for the Greeks, this is not obvious and Diogenes was sometimes reproached for eating in the agora). Since Diogenes ate in the agma,he thought that there was no reasonwhy he should not also masturbate in the agora; for in both caseshe was satisfying a bodily need (adding that "he wished it were as easy to banish hunger by rubbing the belly").88 \(/ell, I will not try (anaideia) of the Cynics as a to conceal the shamelessness practice or technique. scandalous As you may know, the word "cynic" comes from the Greek word meaning "dog-like" (kynikoi); and Diogeneswas called "The Dog." In fact, the first and only contemporary refwhere erence to Diogenes is found in Aristotle's Rhetoric,se Aristotle does not even mention the name Diogenesbut iust calls him "The Dog." The noble philosophersof Greece,who usually comprised an elite group, almost always disregarded the Cynics. -: The Cynics also used another parrhesiastictechnique, viz., the "provocative dialogue." To give you a more precise example of this type of dialogue-which derives from Socratic panhesin-I have chosen a passage from the Fourth Discourse

on Kingship of Dio Chrysostomof Prusa [c.A.D.4O-ll0]. Do you all know who Dio Chrysostom is? \ù7ell, is a very he interesting guy from the last half of the First Century and the beginning of the SecondCentury of our era. He was born at I'rusa in Asia Minor of a wealthy Roman family who played a prominent role in the city-life. Dio's family was typical of the affluent provincial notables that produced so many writers, officers, generals, sometimes even emperors, for the Roman Empire. He came to Rome possibly as a professionalrhetorician, but there are some disputes about this. An American scholar, C.P Jones, has written a very interesting book about Dio Chrysostom which depicts the social life of an intellectual in the Roman Empire of Dio's time.m In Rome Dio Chrysostom became acquainted with Musonius Rufus, the Stoic philosopher, and possibly through him he became involved with some liberal circles generally opposed to personal tyrannic power. He was subsequently exiled by Domitian, who disliked his views, and thus he began a wandering life where he adopted the costume and the attitudes of the Cynics for several years.tù(/hen was finally authorized to return to Rome folhe lowing Domitian's assassination,he started a new career.His former fortune was returned to him, and he becamea wealthy and famous teacher.For a while, however,he had the life-style, the attitude, the habits,and the philosophicalviews of a Cynic philosopher. But we must keep in mind the fact that Dio Chrysostom was not a "pure" cynic; and perhaps with his intellectual backgroundhis depiction ofthe Cynic parrhesiastic game puts it closer to the Socratic tradition than most of the actual Cynic practices.

88. Cf. Diogenes Laertius, VI, 46, 69; Plutarch, "Stoic Self-Contradictions," 1044b. 89. Aristotle,Rhetoric l),10, l4lla24l: "The Dog called taverns'the messrooms of Attica."'

90.Cf.Christopher Jones, Ronanll/orld Dio Chrysostom. P The of

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In the Fourth Discourse of Dio Chrysostom I think you can find all three forms of Cynic panhesia. The end of the Discourseis a kinci of preaching,and throughout there are refbehavior and examplesilluserences Diogenes'scandalous to trating the provocativedialogue of Diogeneswith Alexander. The topic of the Discourse is the famous encounter between Diogenesand Alexander the Great which actually took place at Corinth. The Discourse begins with Dio's thoughts concerning this meeting [-14]; then a fictional dialoguefollows portraying the nature of Diogenes'and Alexander'sconversation [5-81]; and the Discourseends with a long, continuous discussion-fictionally narrated by Diogenes-regarding three typesoffaulty and self-deludingstylesoflife [82-139]. At the very beginning of the Discourse, Dio criticizes those who presentthe meeting of Diogenesand Alexander as an encounterbetweenequals:one man famous for his leadership and military victories, the other famous for his free and life-style and his austereand naturalistic moral self-suffrcient virtue. Dio does not want people to praise Alexander just because as a powerful king, did not disregard a poor guy he, like Diogenes. insists that Alexanderactually feltinferiorto He Diogenes,and was also a bit envious of his reputation; for unlike Alexander,who wantedto conquer the world, Diogenes did not need anything to do what he wanted to do: phalanx,his his himself needed Macedonian [Alexander] Thracians, Paeonians,and many Thessalian cavalry othersif he was to go where he wished and get what he desired;but Diogeneswent forth unatlendedin perfect safetyby night as well as by day wherever he cared to go. Again, he himself requiredhuge sums of gold and silver to carry out any of his proiects;and what is more, if he

expectedto keep the Macedoniansand the other Greeks submissive, must time and again curry favor of their rulers and the general populace by words and gifts; whereasDiogenescaloled no man by flattery but told everybodythe truth and, even though he possessed a not singledrachma,succeeded doing as he pleased, in failed in nothing he set before himself,was the only man who lived the life he considered the best and happiest, and would not haveaccepted Alexander'sthrone or the wealth of the Medesand Persians exchanse his own Doverw.el in for So it is clear that Diogenesappeârshere as the master of truth; and from this point of view, Alexander is both inferior to him and is awareof this inferiority. But although Alexander hassomevicesand faults ofcharacter,he is not a bad king, and game: he chooses play Diogenes'parrhesiastic to So the king came up to Diogenesas he sat there and greetedhim, whereasthe other looked up at him with a terrible glarelike that of a lion and orderedhim to step asidea little, for Diogenes happened be warming himto selfin the sun.Now Alexanderwas at oncedelightedwith the man's boldness and composure in not being awestruckin his presence. For it is somehownatural for the courageous love the courageous, to while cowardseye them with misgivingand hate them as enemies, but welcomethe baseand like them. And so to the one classtruth and franknessft;anhesia) the most agreeable are things in

91. Dio Chrysostom, "Fourth Discourse Kingship," Tians.f. V. on Cohoon,8-10.

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the world,e2 the other, flattery and deceit. The latter to lend a willing ear to thosewho in their intercourse seekto please, former,to thosewho haveregardfor the truth.e3 the The Cynic parrhesiastic game which begins is, in some respects, not unlike the Socratic dialogue since there is an exchange ofquestions and answers. But there are at leastttvo significant differences. First, in the Cynic parrhesiasticgame it is Alexanderwho tends to ask the questionsand Diogenes, the philosopher, who answers-which is the reverse of the Socratic dialogue. Secondly, whereas Socraresplays with his interlocutor's ignorance, Diogenes wants to hurt Alexander's pide. For example,at the beginning of the exchange,Diogenes calls Alexandera bastard[8] and tells him rhat someone who claims to be a king is not so very different from a child who, after winning a game) puts a crown on his head and declares that he is king [4749]. Of course,all that is not very pleasant for Alexander to hear. But that's Diogenes'game: hitting his interlocutor's pride, forcing him to recognizethat he is not what he claims to be-which is something quite different from the Socraticattempt to show someonethat he is ignorant of what he claims to know. In the Socraticdialogues,you sometimes seethat someone's pride has been hurt when he is compelled to recognizethat he does not know what he claims to know. For example,when Calliclesis led to an awareness his of ignorance,he renouncesall discussionbecause his pride has been hurt. But this is onlv a side effect.as ir were. of the main

target of Socraticirony, which is: to show someonethat he is ignorant of his own ignorance.In the caseof Diogenes,however, pride is the main target, and the ignorance/knowledge game is a side effect. From theseattackson an interlocutor's pride, you seethat the interlocutor is brought to the limit of the first parrhesiastic contract,viz., to agreeto play the game,to chooseto engage in discussion.Alexander is willing to engageDiogenesin discussion,to accepthis insolenceand insults, but there is a limit. And every time that Alexander feelsinsulted by Diogenes,he becomes angry and is closeto quitting ofl even to brutalizing Diogenes. So you see that the Cynic parrhesiasticgame is played at the very limits of the parrhesiasticcontract. It borders on transgressionbecausethe panhesiastes may have made too many insulting remarks.Here is an exampleof this play at the limit of the parrhesiasticagreementto engagein discussion: ... [Diogcnes] went on to tell the king that he did not even p o s s e sts e b a d g eo f r o y a l t y . . . ' A n d h a t b a d g ei s t h a t ? " h w "It said Alexander. is the badgeof the bees,"he replied, "that the king wears.Have you not heard that there is a king among the bees,made so by nature,who doesnot hold office by virtue of what you peoplewho trace your descentfrom Heraclescall inheritance?""Vhat is this badge?"inquired Alexander."Have you not heard farmerssay,"askedthe other,"that this is the only beethat has no sting,sincehe requiresno weaponagainst anyone? For no other bee will challengehis right to be king or fight him when he has this badge. havean idea,however, I that you not only go about fully armed but evensleepthat way. Do you not know," he continued,"that it is a sign of fear

92. Diogenes Laenius notes: "Being asked what was the most beautiful thing in the world, [Diogenes] replied 'Freedom of speech lganhesia)'"

93. Dio Chrysostom, "Fourth Discourse Kingship," l4-15. on

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in a man for him to carry arms?And no man who is afraid would ever have a chanceto becomeking any more than a slave would."e4 Diogenesreasons: you beararms,you are afraid. No one if who is afraid can be a king. So, sinceAlexander bearsarms he cannot be a real king. And, of course, Alexander is not very pleased by this logic, and Dio continues: 'At these words Alexander came near hurling his spear." That gesture, of course) would have been the rupture, the transgression, the of parrhesiastic game. When the dialogue arrives at this point, there are two possibilities availableto Diogenes for bringing Alexander back into the game. One way is the following. Diogenes says, in effect, "\ù7ell, alright. I know that you are outraged and you are also free. You have both the ability and the legal sanction to kill me. But will you be courageous enough to hear the truth from me, or are you such a coward that you must kill me?" And, for example, after Diogenes insults Alexanderat one point in the dialogue,he tells him: " . . . I n v i e w o f w h a t I s a y ,r a g ea n d p r a n c ea b o u t . . .a n d think me the greatest blackguardand slanderme to the world and, if it be your pleasure, run me through with your spear;for I am the only man from whom you will get the truth, and you will learn it from no one else.For all are lesshonestthan I am and more servile."es

Diogenes thus voluntarily angers Alexander, and then says, "Vell, you can kill me; but if you do so, nobody elsewill tcll you the truth." And there is an exchange, new parrhesia astic contract is drawn up with a new limit imposed by l)iogenes: either you kill me, or you'll know the truth. This kind of courageous "blackmailing" of the interlocutor in the name of truth makes a positive impression upon Alexander: "Then was Alexander amazed at the courage and fearlessness of the man" [76]. So Alexander decidesto stây in the game, and a new agreementis thereby achieved. Another meansDiogenesemploysfor bringing Alexander back into the gameis more subtle than the previouschallenge: Diogenes also uses trickery. This trickery is different from Socratic ironyl for, as you all know, in Socratic irony, Socrates feigns to be as ignorant as his interlocutor so that his interlocutor will not be ashamedof disclosing his own ignorance, and thus not reply to Socrates'questions. That, at least, was the principle of Socratic irony. Diogenes' trick is somewhat different; for at the moment when his interlocutor is about to terminate the exchange,Diogenes sayssomething which his interlocutor believes is complimentary. For example, after Diogenescalls Alexander a bastard-which was not very wellreceivedby Alexander-Diogenes tells him: "...is it not Olympias who said that Philip is not your father,as it happens,but a dragon or Ammon or somegod or other or demigodor wild animal?And yet in that case you would certainly be a bastard." Thereupon Alexander smiled and was pleasedas never before, thinking that Diogenes,so far from being rude, was the most tactful of men and the only one who really knew how to pay a compliment.e6



95.Ibià.,58-59 96.Ibin., 18-20.



\ùflhereasthe Socratic dialogue traces an intricate and winding path from an ignorant understanding to an awareness of ignorance, the Cynic dialogue is much more like a fight, a battle, or a war, with peaksof great aggressivityand moments of peaceful calm-peaceful exchanges which, of course, are additional traps for the interlocutor. In the Fourth Discourse Dio Chrysostomexplainsthe rationale behind this strategyof mixing aggressivity and sweetness; DiogenesasksAlexander: "Have you not heard the Libyan myrh?"e7 And the king replied that he had not. Then Diogenestold it to him with zest and charm, because wanted to put him in he a good humor, just as nurses,after giving the children a whipping, tell them a story to comfort and pleasethem.e8 And a bit further on. Dio adds: When Diogenes perceived that [Alexander] was greatly excited and quite keyed up in mind with expectancy, he toyed with him and pulled him about in the hope that somehowhe might be moved from his pride and thirst for glory and be able to soberup a little. For he noticedthat at one moment he was delighted,and at anothergrieved, at the samething, and that his soulwasasunsettled the as weather at the solstices when both rain and sunshine come from the very samecloud.ee Diogenes' charm, however,is only a meansof advancing

the game and of preparing the way for additional aggressive exchanges.Thus, after Diogenes pleasesAlexander with his remarks about his "bastard" genealogy,and considers the possibility that Alexander might be the son of Zeus, he goeseven further: he tells Alexander that when Zeus has a son, he gives his son marks of his divine birth. Of course,Alexander thinks that he has such marks. Alexander then asks Diogenes how one can be a good king. And Diogenes' reply is a purely moral portrayal ofkingship: "No one can be a bad king any more than he can be a bad good man; for the king is the bestone among men, since he is most brave and righteousand humane,and cannot be overcomeby any toil or by any appetite. Or do you think a man is a charioteer he cannotdrive. or that one if is a pilot if he is ignorant of steering,or is a physician if he knows not how to cure?It is impossible,nay,though all the Greeksand barbariansacclaimhim as such and load him with diademsand sceptres and tiaras like so many necklaces that are put on castawaychildren lest they fail of recognition. Therefore,just as one cannot pilot except after the manner of pilots, so no one can be king exceptin a kingly way."roo \ù7e here the analogy of statesmanshipwith navigation see and medicine that we have already noted. As the "son of Zeus," Alexander thinks that he has marks or signs to show that he is a king with a divine birth. But Diogenes shows Alexander that the truly royal character is not linked to special

97.Cf.Dio Chrysostom, Fifth Discourse: LibyanMyth." "The A 98.Dio Chrysostom, FourthDiscourse Kingship," "The on 73-74. 99. Ibid.,77-78.


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status, birth, power, and so on. Rather, the only way of being a true king is to behave like one. And when Alexander asks how he might learn this art of kingship, Diogenes tells him that it cannot be learned,for one is noble by nature t26_311. Here the game reachesa point where Alexander does not becomeconsciousof his lack of knowledge, as in a Socratic dialogue.He discovers, instead,that he is not in any way what he thought he was-viz., a king by royal birth, with marks of his divine status,or king because ofhis superior power, and so on. He is brought to a point where Diogenestells him that the only way to be a real king is to adopt rhe same type of ethosas the Cynic philosopher.And at this point in the exchange rhere is nothing more for Alexander to say. In the case Socraticdialogue,it alsosometimes of happens that when the person Socrates been questioning no longer has knows what to say,Socratesresumesthe discourse by present_ ing a positive thesis, and then the dialogue ends. In this text by Dio Chrysostom,Diogenesbegins a continuous discourse; however, discussiondoesnot presentthe truth ofa positive his thesis, but is content to give a precise description of three faulty modes of life linked ro the royal characrer.The first one is devoted to wealth, the second to physical pleasure,and the third to glory and political power. And these three life_styles are personified by three daimones spirits. or The concept of the daimon was popular in Greek culture, and also became a philosophical concept-in plutarch, for example. The fight against evil daimonesin Christian asceti_ cism has precursors in the Cynic tradition. Incidentally, the concept of the denon has been elaborated in an excellent arti_ cle in the Dr'ctiannaire Spiitual;16.ror de
l0l. Cf. Francois Vandenbroucke, ..Démon," Dictionnaire de Spiitualité.

Diogenes gives an indication of the three daimones which Alexander must fight throughout his life, and which constitute the target of a permanent "spiritual srrtggle"-"combat spiituel." Of course,this phrase does not occur in Dio's textl for here it is not so much a content which is specific and important, but the idea of a parrhesiastic practice which enablessomeoneto fight a spiritual war within himself. And I think we can also seein the aggressive encounter Alexander and Diogenes a struggle occurring between betweentwo kinds of power: political power and the power of truth. In this struggle, the parrhesia.ster acceptsand confronts a permanentdanger:Diogenesexposes himself to Alexander's power from the beginning to the end of the Discourse.And the main effect of this parrhesiastic strugglewith power is not to bring the interlocutor to a new truth) or to a new level of self-awareness; is to lead the interlocutor to internalize this it parrhesiasticstruggle-to frght within himself against his own faults, and to be with himself in the sameway that Diogenes was with him. r02 Personal relationships I would now like to analyze the parrhesiasticgame in the framework of personal relationships, selecting some examples from Plutarch and Galen which I think illustrate some of the technicalproblems which can arise. In Plutarch there is a text which is explicitly devoted to the problem of ponhesia.Addressing certain aspectsof the parproblem, Plutarch tries to answerthe question: How rhesiastic is it possible to recognize a tr:ueparrhesiastes truth-teller? ot possible to distinguish a panhesiasus And similarly: How is it
102. Sixth and Final Lecture: 30 November 1983.


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from a flatterer? The title of this text, which cames from Plutarch's Moralia, is "How to Tell a Flatterer from a Friend.'r03 I think we need to underline several points from this essay. First, why do we need, in our personal lives, to have some friend who plays the role of a panhes.ia.s/es, a truthof teller? The reasonPlutarch gives is found in the predominant kind of relationship we often have to ourselves, viz., a relation of philautia [Qrloudcr] or "self-love." This relation of self-love is, for us, the ground of a persistent illusion about what we really are: It is because this self-lovethat everybodyis himself his of own foremost and greatestflatterer, and hence finds no difficulty in admitting rhe oursider ro wirness with him and to confirm his own conceitsand desires.For the man who is spoken of with opprobrium as a lover of flatterers is in high degreea lover of self, and, because his kindof ly feeling towards himself, he desiresand conceives himself to be endowedwith all manner of good qualities; but although the desirefor theseis not unnatural, yet the conceit that one possesses them is dangerousand must be carefully avoided.Now if luth is a thing divine, and, as Plato puts it, the origin "ofall good for gods and all good for men" fLaws,730cl,then the flatterer is in all likelihood an enemy to rhe gods and parricularly to the Pythian god. For the flatterer alwaystakes a position over against the maxim "Know Thyself," by creating in every man deception towards himself and ignorance both of 103.Plutarch,"How to Tèll a Flattererfrom a Friend,,'Tians.E C. Babbitt. Mmalia, l,261-395. Vol.

himself and of the good and evil that concernshimself; the good he renders defectiveand incomplete, and the evil wholly impossibleto amend.rM IVeare our own flatterers,and it is in order to disconnect to relation we have to ourselves, rid ourselves this spontaneous of our philautia, rhar we need a panhesiastes. and to accepta panhesiastes. But it is difficult ro recognize For not only is it difficult to distinguish a true panhesiastes from a flatterer; becauseof our philautia we are also not interSo in ested recognizing a parrhesiastes. at stake in this text is the problem of determining the indubitable criteria which enable we us to distinguish the genuine panhesiastes need so badly to of rid ourselves our ownpfrilautia from the flatterer who "plays the part of friend with the gravity of a tragedian" [50s1.tos And this implies that we are in posessionof a kind of "semi-

r04. Ibid..49a-b.
105. Regarding the strategies the flatterer employs to camouflage his true nature, Plutarch writes: "The most unprincipled trick ofall that he has is this: perceiving that frankness of speech fttarhesiaf, by common report and belief, is the language of friendship especially (as an animal has its peculiar cry), and, on the other hand, that lack offrankness is unfriendly and ignoble, he does not allow even this to escape imitation, Lut, iust as clever cooks employ bitter extracts and astringent flavorings to remove the cloying effect of sweet things, so flatterers apply a frankness which is not genuine or beneficial, but which, as it were, winks while it frowns, and does nothing but tickle. For these reasons, then, the man is hard to detect, as in the case with some animals to which Nature has given the faculty of changing their hue, so that they exactly conform to the colors and objects beneath them. And since the flatterer uses resemblances to deceive and to wrap about him, it is our task to use the differences in order to unwrap 'adorning himself with him and lay him bare, in the act, as Plato puts it, of alien colors and forms for want of any of his own'lPhaeilns,239d]" (51c-d).


I r aRLEss SpÊEcH

ology" of the realparhesiastes. Plutarch proposestwo maior criteria to answer the ques_ tion, How can we recognizea ûue paffhesiasres? First, there is a conformity betweenwhat the real truth-teller sayswith how he behaves-and here you recognize the Socratic harmony of the Laches,where Laches explains that he could trust Socratesas a truth-teller about couragesince he saw that Socratesrcally was courageousat Delium, and thus, that he exhibited a harmo_ nious accordberweenwhat he said and what he did. There is also a second criterion, which is: the perma_ nence,the continuity, the stability and steadiness the true of panhesiastes, true friend, regarding his choices, his opin_ the ions, and his thoughts: ...it is necessary observethe uniformity and perma_ to nenceof his tasres, wherherhe alwaystakesdelight in the samethings,and commendsalwaysthe samethings, and whetherhe directsand ordainshis own life accordingto one pattern, as becomesa freeborn man and a lover of congenialfriendship and intimacy; for such is the con_ duct ofa friend. But the flatterer, since he has no abiding placeofcharacterto dwell in, and sincehe leadsa life not of his own choosing but another's, molding and adapting himself to suit anothet is not simple, not one, but vari_ able and many in one,and, like water that is poured into one receptacle after another, is constantlyon the move he from place ro place, and changes his shape to fit his receiver.r6

106. Plutarch, "How to Tell a Flatterer from a Friend." 52a_b

Of course there are a lot of other very interesting things about this essay.But I would like to underscore two major themes. First, the theme of self-delusion, and its link with philautia-which is not something completely new. But in Plutarch's text you can seethat his notion of self-delusionas a consequence self-love is clearly different from being in a of state of ignorance about one's own lack of self-knowledgeâ state which Socrates attempted to overcome. plutarch,s conceptionemphasizes the fact that not only are we unable to know that we know nothing, but we are also unable to know exactly what we are. And I think that this theme of self-delusion becomesincreasingly important in Hellenistic culture. In Plutarch'speriod it is something really signihcant. A secondtheme which I would like to stressis steadiness of mind. This is also nor somerhing neq but for late Stoicism the notion of steadiness takes on great importance.And there is an obvious relation between these two themes-the theme of selÊdelusion and the theme of constancy or persistency [èvôe],é1ercl of mind. For desrroying self-delusion and acquiring and maintaining continuity of mind are two ethicomoral activities which are linked ro one another. The selfdelusion which prevents you from knowing who or what you are, and all the shifts in your rhoughts,feelings,and opinions which force you to move from one thought to another, one feeling to another, or one opinion to another,demonstratethis linkage. For if you are able to discern exactly whar you are, then you will stick to rhe same point, and you will nor be moved by anything. If you are moved by any sort of stimulation, feeling, passion,etc., then you are not able to stay close to yourselt you are dependent upon something else,you are driven to different concerns, and consequently you are not able to maintain complete self-possession.



These two elements-being deluded about yourself and being moved by changesin the world and in your thoughtsboth developedand gained significance in the Christian tradition. In early Christian spirituality, Satanis often represented as the agentboth ofself-delusion (as opposedto the renunciation of self) and of the mobility of mind-the instability or unsteadiness the soul as opposedto firmitas in the contemof plation of God. Fasteningone's mind to God was a way, first, of renouncing one's self so as to eliminate any kind of selfdelusion.r0T And it was also a way to acquire an ethical and an ontologicalsteadiness. I think that we can seein Plutarch's So text-in the analysis of the relation betweenpanhesia ar'd.flattery-some elements which also became significant for the Christian tradition. I would like to refer now, very briefly, to a text by Galen [4.D. 130-200]-the famous physician at the end of the SecondCentury-where you can see the same problem: How is it possible to recognize a real panhesiastes? Galen raises this question in his essay"The Diagnosis and Cure of the Soul's Passionsr" where he explains that in order for a man to free himself from his passions,he needs a panhesiastes; just as for in Plutarch a century previously,philazlia, self-love, is the root of self-delusion: ...we see the faults of others but remain blind to those which concernourselves. men admit the truth of this All and, furthermore, Plato gives the reason for it fLaws, 73le]. He saysthat the lover is blind in the caseof the object of his love. If, therefore,each of us loves himself most of all. he must be blind in his own case... There are passions of the soul which everybody knows: anger,wrath, fear,grief, enlry', and violent lust. In

vehemence loving or hating anyin my opinion, excessive thing is also a passion;I think the saying "moderation is best" is correct,sinceno immoderateaction is good. Hoq if then, could a man cut out thesepassions he did not first he had them? But as we said, it is impossibleto know that

107. Foucault discusses the Christian "renunciation ofself" in the context of Christian truth obligations in the following: "S7hat about truth as a duty in our Christian societies? As everybody knows, Christianity is a confession. This means that Christianity belongs to a very special type of religion-those which impose obligations of truth on those who practice them. Such obligations in Christianity are numerous. For instance, there is the obligation to hold as truth a set of propositions which constitute dogma, the obligation to hold certain books as â permanent source of truth, and obligations to accept the decisions ofcertain authorities in matters of truth. But Christianity requires another form of truth obligation. Everyone in Christianity has the duty to explore who he is, what is happening within himselt the faults he may have committed, the temptations to which he is exposed. Moreover everyone is obliged to tell these things to other people, and hence to bear witness against himself. regarding the faith, the "These two ensembles of obligation-those book, the dogma, and those regarding the self, the soul, and the heartare linked together. A Christian needs the light of faith when he wants to explore himself. Conversely, his access to the truth can't be conceived of without the purification ofthe soul... I would like to underline that the Christian discovery of the self does not reveal the self as an illusion. It gives place to a task which can't be anything else but undefined. This task has two obiectives. First, there is the task of clearing up all the illusions, temptations, and seductions which can occur in the mind, and discovering the reality of what is going on within ourselves. Secondly one has to get free from any attachment to this self, not because the self is an illusion, but because the self is much too real. The more we discover the truth about ourselves, the more we have to renounce ourselves; and the more \ryewant to renounce ourselves, the more we need to bring to light the reality ofourselves. That is what we could call the spiral oftruth formulation and reality renouncement which is at the heart of Christian techniques ofthe self" ["Sexuality and Solitude," lozdon Reoicw of Books, 2l May-3 June 1981, 51.

/ichel Foucault


know them, sincewe love ourselvesto excess. Even if this sayingwill not permit you to iudge yourself,it doesallow thât you can judge others whom you neither love nor hate. Whenever you hear anyone in town being praised because flattersno man, associate he with that man and judge from your own experience whether he is the sort of m a n t h e y s a yh e i s . . . S7hena man doesnot greet the powerful and wealthy by name,when he does not visit them, when he doesnot dine with them, when he lives a disciplinedlife, expect that man to speakthe truth; try too, to come to a deeper knowledge of what kind of man he is (and this comes about through long association). Ifyou find such a man, summon him and talk with him one day in private;ask him to reveal straightaway whatever of the abovementioned passionshe may seein you. Tell him you will be most grateful for this service and that you will look on him as your deliverer more than if he had savedyou from an illness of the body. Have him promise to reveal it whenever he seesyou affected by any of the passions I havementioned.rog It is interesting to note that in this text, thepanhesiastes_ which everyoneneedsin order to get rid of his own self-delu_ sion-does not need to be a friend, someoneyou know, someone with whom you are acquainted. And this, I think, consti_ tutes a very important difference between Galen and plutarch. In Plutarch, Seneca, and the tradition which derives from

Socrates,the panhesiastes always needsto be a friend. And this friendship relation was alwaysat the root of the parrhesiastic game. As far as I know, for the first time with Galen, the parrhesiastes longer needsto be a friend. Indeed, it is much betno be ter, Galen tells us, that the panhesiastes someonewhom you do not know in order for him to be completely neutal. A good truth-teller who gives you honest counselabout yourselfdoes not hate you, but he does not love you either. A. goodpanhesiastes someonewith whom you have previously had no paris ticular relationship. But of courseyou cannot choosehim at random. You must check some criteria in order to know whether he really is capable of revealingyour faults. And for this you must have heard of him. Does he have a good reputation?Is he old enough?Is he rich enough?It is very important that the one who plays be the role of.the panhesiastes at least as rich as,or richer than, you are. For if he is poor and you are rich, then the chances will be greaterthat he will be a flatterer,since it is now in his interest to do so.roe The Cynics,of course,would havesaid that someonewho is rich, who has a positive relation to wealth, cannot really be wise; so it is not worthwhile selecting him as a panhesiastes. who is richer than you to act Galen'sidea of selectingsomeone as your truth-teller would seem ridiculous to a Cynic. the But it is also interesting to note that in this essay, truthteller doesnot need to be a physician or doctor. For in spite of the fact that Galen himself was a physician, was often obliged passionsof others, and often succeeded to "cure" the excessive

108. passions," Galen, "The Diagnosis Cureof the Soul's paul and Ti"ans. !0.Harkins; 3l-33.

|0g.Ibid , 32-i6; cf.Michel Foucaurt,Le souci ite soi, 65-69,72.



in doing so, he does not require of a panhesiastes that he be a doctor,or that he possess ability to cure you ofyour pasthe sions.All that is required is that he be able ro tell you the rruth about yourself. But it is still nor enough ro know thar the truth-teller is old enough,rich enough,and has a good reputation. He must also be resæd. And Galen gives a program for testing rhe potentral panhesiastes. For example, you must ask him questions about himself and seehow he respondsto determinewhether he will be severeenough for the role. You have to be suspicious when the would-beparràesiastes congratulates you, when he is not severe enough,and so on. Galen doesnot elaborateupon the preciserole oftheparrhesiastes " The Diagnosis and Cure of the Soul's Passions"l in he only gives a few examples of the son of advice he himself gave while assuming this role for others. But, to summarize the foregoing, in this text rhe relationship betweenparrhesia and friendship no longer seemsto obtain, and there is a kind of trial or examinationrequired of the potentialpathesiastesby his "patron" or "client." I apologize for being so brief about these rexts from Plutarch and Galen; but they are nor very difficult to read, only diffrcult to find. In Techniques Examination of Preliminary remarks I would now like to turn to the various techniques of the parrhesiasticgameswhich can be found in the philosophicaland moral literature of the first two centuries of our era. Of course, I do not plan to enumerateor discussall of the important practices that can be found in the writings of this period. To begin with, I would like to make three preliminary remarks.

First, I think that thesetechniquesmanifest a very interestingand important shift from that truth gamewhich-in the classicalGreek conception of panhesia-was constituted by enough to tell the truth the fact that someonewas courageous to otherpeople.For there is a shift from that kind of parrhesiastic game to another truth game which now consistsin being courageousenough to disclose the truth aboutoneself. Secondly,this new kind of parrhesiasticgame-where the problem is to confront the truth about yourself-requires what the Greeks calle{ asÈesis [rioreotç]. Although our word qscetictsm (since the meanderives from ihe Greek word asËesis with various ing of the word changesas it becomesassociated Christian practices),for the Greeks the word does not mean "âscetic," but has a very broad sense denoting any krnd of For example,it was a commonpractical training or exercise. placeto saythat any kind ofart or techniquehad to be learned and by mathesis asÈesls-by theoreticalknowledgeand practical training. And, for instance, when Musonius Rufus says tou that the art of living, techne biou, islike the other arts' i'e.) an art which one could not learn only through theoretical tou he teachings, is repeatinga traditional doctrine. This techne biou, rhis art of living, demands practice and training: asÈesls.r10But the Greek conception of ashesisdiffers from Christian asceticpracticesin at least two ways: (l) Christian has as its ultimate aim or targetthe renunciation of asceticism of the self, whereas the moral asËesis the Greco-Roman

51-57; ll0. Cf. MusoniusRufus,"On Tiaining" [flepi croloeroç]'
as Epictetus, "On Tiaining," in The Discourses Reponed b3tAùm (III, l2); 'fhe Culture of the SelQ; Michel Foucauln,The Care of the Sef (Chapter II: Foucault interview, "On the Genealogy of Ethics," passim; P. Hadot, Exercises spiituek et philosophieantique.


F E À R L E s sS P E E Ô H

philosophieshasas its goal the establishment a specificrelaof and tionship to oneself-a relationship of self-possession selfsovereignty; (2) Christian asceticism takes as its principal theme detachmentfrom the world, whereasthe asceticpractices of the Greco-Roman philosophies are generally concernedwith endowing the individual with the preparationand the moral equipment that will permit him to fully confront the world in an ethical and rational manner. Thirdly, theseasceticpracticesimplied numerous different kinds ofspecific exercises; but they were never specifically catalogued analyzed,or described. Some of them were dis, cussed and criticized, but most of them were well-known. Since most people recognizedthem, they were usually used without any precise theory about the exercise.And indeed, when one now reads these Greek and Latin authors as they discusssuch exercisesin the context of specific theoretical etc.),one topics (such as time, death, the world, life, necessity, often getsa mistaken conceptionabout them. For thesetopics usually function only as a schemaor matrix for the spiritual exercise. fact, most of these texts written in late antiquity In about ethics are not at all concernedwith advancinga theory about the foundations of ethics, but are practical books containing specific recipes and exercisesone had to read, to reread,to meditate upon) to learn, in order to constructa lasting matrix for one's own behavior. where someone I now turn to the kinds of exercises had to examine the truth about himself. and tell this truth to someone else. Most of the time when we refer to such exercises, speak we of practicesinvolving the "examination of conscience."But I think that the expression"examination of conscience"as a blanket term meant to characterize all these different

misleadsand oversimplifies. For we have to define exercises very preciselythe different truth gameswhich have been put into work and applied in thesepracticesof the Greco-Roman tradition. I would like to analyzefive of these truth games in commonly describedas "examinationsof conscience" order differ from one to show you (l) how some of the exercises of another; (2) what aspects the mind, feelings'behavior,etc', and (3) that these were consideredin thesedifferent exercisesl implied a relation between differences, despitetheir exercises, truth and the self which is very different from what we {ind in the Christian tradition. Solitary self-examination The first lext I would like to analyze comes from Seneca's De ira l"On Anger"]: They are ought to be trained to endurance. All our senses if only the mind desistsfrom naturally long-suffering, weakeningthem. This should be summonedto give an accountof itself every day. Sextiushad this habit' and when the day was over and he had retired to his nightly to rest,he would put thesequestions his soul:"What bad habit have you cured today?What fault haveyou resistand are ed?In what respects you better?"Angerwill cease if becomecontrollable it finds that it must appearbefore a iudge every day.Can anything be more excellentthat this practice of thoroughly sifting the whole day? And how delightful the sleepthat follows this self-examination-how tranquil it is, how deepand untroubled,when the soul has either praised or admonisheditself, and when this secretexaminer and critic of self has given I reportof its own character! avail myselfof this privilege'

[ , 4 i c h eF o u c a u l t l

Frlnress Speecs

and every day I plead my cause before the bar of self. \7hen the light has been removed from sight, and my wife, long awareof my habit, hasbecome silent,I scanthe whole of my day and retraceall my deedsand words. I concealnorhing from myself,I omit nothing. For why shouldI shrink from any of my mistakes, when I may communethus with my selP "Seethat you neverdo that again; I will pardon you this time. In that dispute you spoke too offensively; after this don,t have encounrers with ignorant people;those who have never learneddo not want to learn. You reprovedthat man more frankly than you ought, and consequently you havenot so much mendedhim as offendedhim. In the future,considernot only the truth of what you say,but alsowhetherthe man to whom you are speakingcan endure the truth. A good man accepts reproofgladly; the worsea man is the more bitterly hs lsssnlsi1."rtt rVe know from severalsourcesthat this kind of exercise wasa daily requirement,or at leasta habit, in the pythagorean tradition.r12 Beforethey went ro sleep,the pythagoreans had to perform this kind of examination,recollectingthe faults they had committed during the day. Such faults consisredin those sortsof behaviorwhich transgressed very strict rules of the rhe Pythagorean Schools.And the purposeof this examination)at leastin the Pythagorean tradirion, was ro purify the soul. Such purification was believed necessarysince the pythagoreans consideredsleepto be a stareofbeing whereby the soul could

get in contact with the divinity through dreams. And, of course,one had to keep one's soul as pure as possibleboth to have beautiful dreams, and also to come into contact with benevolentdeities. In this text of Seneca's can clearly see we that this Pythagorean tradition survives in the exercise he describes(as it also doeslater on in similar practicesutilized by the Christians).The idea of employing sleepand dreamsas a possiblemeansof apprehendingthe divine can alsobe found in Plato's Republic [Book IX, 57le-572b]. Senecatells us that by means of this exercisewe are able to procure good and delightful sleep: "How delightful the sleep that follows this examination-how tranquil it is, how deep and untroubled." And we know from Senecahimself that under his teacher, Sotio, his first training was partly Pythagorean. Senecarelates this practice, however, not to Pythagorean custom, but to of Quintus Sextius,who was one of the advocates Stoicism in Rome at rhe end of the First Century B.C. And it seemsthat this exercise, despite its purely Pythagorean origin, wâs utilized and praised by severalphilosophical sectsand schools: the Epicureans,Stoics, Cynics, and others. There are referAnd encesin Epictetus,for example,to this kind of exercise. it would be uselessto deny that Seneca's self-examinationis similar to the kinds of asceticpracticesused for centuries in the Christian tradition. But if we look at the text more closely, I think we can seesome interesting differences.rrs First, there is the question of Seneca's attitude towards himself. Vhat kind of operation is Seneca actually performing \ùVhatis the practical matrix he uses and in this exercise? applies in relation to himself.) At first glance,it seemsto be

1ll. Seneca,"On Anger," Tians. John W. Basore; 33g-341. I 12. Cf. Michel Foucault, Ie Souci de soi.77.


i/ichel Foucault

t E A R L E S sS P Ê E c H

a judiciary pracricewhich is closeto the Christian confessional: there are thoughts, these thoughts are confessed, there is an accused (namely, Seneca),there is an accuser or prosecutor (who is also Seneca),there is a iudge (also Seneca), and it seems that there is a verdict. The entire sceneseems be iudi_ to ciary; and Seneca employs typical fudiciary expressions ("appear before a judger" "plead my causebefore the bar of selfr" etc.).Closer scrutiny shows,however,that it is a question of something different from the court) or from iudicial proce_ dure. For instance, Senecasays that he is an ,.examiner,'of himself fspeculntor snil. The word specubrûrmeans an ..exam_ iner" or "inspectol"-typically someone who inspects the freight on a ship, or the work being done by builders con_ structing a house, etc. Senecaalso says ,,totumdiem meum scru_ 167"-'(l examine, inspect, the whole of my day.,,Here the verb scrutor belongs, not to iudicial vocabulary but to the vocabularyof administration. Senecastatesfurther ont,,fac_ taque ac dicta mea 7s1nsg.js7"-<.2nd retrace, recount, all my I deedsand words." The verb renetii is a technical term used in bookkeepingand has rhe senseof checking whether there is any kind ofmiscalculation or error in the accounts.So Seneca is not exactly a iudge passing sentenceupon himself. He is much more of an administratorwho, once the work is finished, or when the year's business is completed, draws up the accounts, takes stock of things, and seeswhether everything has been done correctly. It is more of an administrative scene than a iudiciary one. And if we turn to the faults that Seneca retraces, and which he gives as examplesin this examination, we can see that they are not the sort of faults we would call ,.sins." He doesnot confess,for example, that he drinks too much. or has

committed financial fraud, or has bad feelings for someone else-faults Senecawas very familiar with as one of Nero's ring. He reproaches himself for very different things. He has criticized someone,but instead of his criticism helping the man, it has hurt him. Or he criticizes himself for being disgusted by people who were, in any case,incapableof understanding him. Behaving in such fashion, he commits "mistakes" lenorcs]; but these mistakes are only ineffrcient actions requiring adjustmentsbetweenends and means.He criticizes himself for not keepingthe aim of his actionsin mind, for not to seeingthat it is useless blame someoneif the criticism given will not improve things, and so on. The point of the fault concerns a practicalerror in his behavior since he was unable to establishan effectiverational relation betweenthe principles ofconduct he knows and the behavior he actually engagedin. of faults are not transgressions a code or law. They Seneca's rather,occasions when his attempt to coordinaterules express, recognizes, and knows) of behavior (rules he already accepts, with his own actualbehavior in a specificsituation has proven or to be unsuccessful inefficient. Senecaalso does not reactto his own errors as if they were sins. He does not punish himself; there is nothing like penance.The retracing of his mistakeshas as its obiect the reactivation of practical rules of behavior which, now reinforced, may be useful for future occasions.He thus tells himself: "See that you never do that againr""Don't have encounterswith ignorant peopler" "In the future, consider not only the truth of what you say, but also whether the man to whom you are speakingcan endure the truth," and so on. Senecadoes not analyzehis responsibility or feelings of guilt; it is not, for him, a question of purifuing himself of these faults. Rather, he engagesin a kind of administrative scrutiny which enables


F E A R L E s sS P E Ê c H

him to reactivate various rules and maxims in order to make them more vivid, permanent) and effective for future behavior. Self-diagnosis The secondtext I would like to discusscomesfrom Seneca,s De tranquillinteanimi ["On the Tianquillity of Mind"]. TheDe tranquillitate animi is one of a number of texts written about a theme we have already encountered, viz., constancy or steadiness mind. To put it very briefly, the Latin word tranof quillitas, which is supposed ro rranslate the Greek word eùOop'rcr, denotesstability of soul or mind. Ir is a statewhere the mind is independentof any kind of external evenr,and is free as well from any internal excitation or agitation that could induce an involuntary movement of mind. Thus it denotes stability, self-sovereignty,and independence. But tranquillitas alsorefersto a certain feeling ofpleasurablecalm which hasits source, its principle, in this self-sovereignty or selfpossession ofthe self. At the beginning of the De tanquillitate animi, Annaeus Serenusasks Senecafor a consultation. Serenusis a young friend of Seneca's who belongedto the samefamily, and who started his political career under Nero as Nero's nightwatchman. For both Seneca and Serenus there is no incompatibility betweenphilosophy and a political careersince a philosophical life is not merely an ahernarive to a political life. Rather, philosophy must accompany political life in order to provide a a moral framework for public activity. Serenus,who was initially an Epicurean,later turned towards Stoicism. But even after he becamea Stoic, he felt uncomfortable; for he had the impression that he was nor able to improve himself, that he had reacheda deadend, and was unable to make any progress.

I should note that for the Old Stoa-for Zeno of Citium, for example--when a person knew the doctrinesof the Stoic phianymore,for he has losophyhe did not really need to Progress in thereby succeeded becoming a Stoic. What is interesting here is the idea ofprogressoccurring as a new developmentin the evolution of Stoicism. Serenusknows the Stoic doctrine and its practical rules, but still lacks tanquillitas' And it is in this state of unrest that he turns to Senecaand asks him for help. Of course, we cannot be sure that this depiction of statereflectshis real historical situation; we can only Serenus' wrote this text. But the text is be reasonablysure that Seneca supposedto be a letter written to Serenusincorporating the latter's requestfor moral advice. And it exhibits a model or pattern for a type of self-examination. examineswhat he is or what he hasaccomplished Serenus this consultation: at the moment when he requests SERENUS: \fhen I made examination of myself it t e , b e c a m e v i d e n t S e n e c a 'h a t s o m eo f m y v i c e sa r e u n c o v so eredand displayed openlythat I can put my hand upon them, someare more hidden and lurk in a corner'some and I should presentbut recur at intervals; are not always being by far the most troublesome, say that the last are when the opporthat springupon one like rovingenemies tunity offers, and allow one neither to be ready as in war, nor to be offguard as in Peace. the Nevertheless statein which I find myselfmost of all-for why should I not admit the truth to you as to a physician?-is that I have neither been honestlyset free from the things I hated and feared, nor' on the other hand, am I in bondageto them; while the condition in




which I am placedis not the worst,yet I am complaining and fretful-I am neither sick nor well.r14 As you can see,Serenus' requesttakesthe form ofa "medical" consultationof his own spiritual state.For he says,"why should I not admit the truth to you as to a physician?"; "I am neither sick nor well"l and so on. Theseexpressions clearare ly related to the well-known metaphorical identification of moral discomfort with physical illness. And what is also important 1o underline here is that in order for Serenusto be cured of his illness, he hrst needs to "admit the truth" [oerum fatearf to Seneca.But what are the truths that Serenus must "confess"? \fle shall seethat he discloses secretfaults, no shameno ful desires,nothing like that. It is somethingentirely different from a Christian confession.And this "confession" can be divided into two parts. First, there is Serenus'very general exposéabout himself; and secondly,there is an exposéof his attitude in different fields ofactivity in his life. The generalexposéabout his condition is the following: There is no needfor you to saythat all the virtues areweakly at the beginning,that firmnessand strengthare added by time. I am well awarealso that the virtues that struggle for outward show,I mean for position and the fame of eloquence and all that comesunder the verdict ofothers, do grow strongeras time passes-both those that provide real strengthand thosethat trick us out with a sort ofdye with a view to pleasing, must wait long yearsuntil gradually length of time developscolor-but I greatly fear that
l14. Seneca,"On Tianquillity of Mind," Tians. John \ùf.Basore, I. l-3.

habit, which brings stability to most things, may cause this fault of mine to becomemore deeply implanted' Of things evil as well as good long intercourseinduces love. The nature of this weaknessof mind that halts between two things and inclines strongly neither to the right nor to the wrong, I cannot show you so well all at onceas a part at a time; I shall tell you what befallsmeyou will find a name for my malady.rrs Serenustells us that the truth about himself that he will now exposeis descriptiveof the malady he suffersfrom. And from these general remarks and other indications he gives later on, we can seethat this malady is comparedthroughout causedby being aboard a boat which no to the seasickness is but longer advances, rolls and pitches at sea.Serenus afraid of remaining at seain this condition, in full view of the dry to land which remains inaccessible him. The organizationof with its implicit and, aswe shall describes, the themesSerenus to see,its explicit metaphoricalreference being at sea,involves the traditional associationin moral-political philosophy of medicine and piloting a boat or navigation-which we have already seen. Here we also have the same three elements: a moral-philosophical problem, reference to medicine, and is to reference piloting. Serenus on the way towards acquiring he the truth like a ship at seain sight of dry land' But because or self-possession selÊmastery he has the feellacks complete ing that he cannol advance.Perhapsbecausehe is too weak' perhapshis courseis not a good one. He doesnot know exactly what is the reasonfor his waverings, but he characterizeshis malaiseas a kind of perpetual vacillating motion which has no
I 15. Seneca,"On the Thanquillity of Mind," I. 3-4.



other movement than "rocking." The boat cannot advance becauseit is rocking. So Serenus'problem is: how can he replacethis wavering motion of rocking-which is due to the instability, the unsteadiness his mind-with a steadylinear of movement that will take him to the coast and to the firm earth?It is a problem of dynamics,but very different from the Freudian dynamics of an unconsciousconflict between two psychicforces.Here we have an oscillaring motion of rocking which prevents the movement of the mind from advancing towards the truth, towards steadiness, towards the ground. And now we have to seehow this metaphoricaldynamic grid organizes Serenus'description himself in the following long of quotation: (l) I am possessed the very greatestlove of frugality, by I must confess; do not like a couch made up for display, I nor clothing brought forth from a chesr or pressedby weightsand a thousandmanglesto make it glossy, but homelyand cheap,that is neitherpreserved to be put nor on with anxiouscare;the food that I like is neither prepared nor watchedby a householdof slaves, does not it need to be ordered many days before nor to be servedby many hands, but is easy to get and abundant;there is nothing far-fetchedor costly about it, nowherewill there be any lack of it, it is burdensome neitherto the pursenor to the body, nor will it rerurn by the way it entered; the servant that I like is a young home-born slave without training or skill; the silver is my country-bredfather's heavyplate bearing no stamp of the maker'sname,and the table is not notablefor the variety of its markingsor known to the town from the many fashionable owners through whosehands it has passed, but one that stands

for use, and will neither cause the eyes of any guest to linger upon it with pleasure nor fire them with enly. Then, after all thesethings havehad my full approval,my mind lanimu.d is dazzled by the magnificence of some by training schoolsfor pages, the sight ofslavesbedecked with gold and more carefully arrayed than the leadersof a public procession,and a whole regiment of glittering attendants;by the sight ofa housewhere one even treads on preciousstonesand riches are scatteredabout in every corner, where the very roofs glitter, and the whole town pays court and escortsan inheritance on the road to ruin. And what shall I sayof the waters,transparentto the bottom, that flow around the guests even as they banquet, what of the feaststhat are worthy of their setting?Coming from a long abandonment to thrift, luxury has poured around me the wealth of its splendor,and echoedaround me on every side.My sight falters a little, for I can lift up my heart towards it more easily than my eyes.And so I come back, not worse, but sadder, and I do not walk with head erect as before, among my paltry possessions and there enters a secretsting and the doubt whether the other life is not better. None of these things changesme, yet none of them fails to disturb me. (2) I resolve to obey the commands of my teachersand plunge into the midst of public life; I resolveto try to gain office and the consulship, attracted of course,not by the purple or by the lictor's rods, but by the desireto be more and useful to my friends and relativesand all serviceable my countrymen and then to all mankind. Ready and determined, I follow Zeno, Cleanthes,and Chrysippus,of whom none the lessnot one failed to urge others to do so.

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And then,whenever somethingupsetsmy mind, which is unusedto meetingshocks, wheneversomethinghappens that is either unworthyof me, and many suchoccurin the lives of all human beings,or that does not proceed very easily, when things that are not to be accounted or ofgreat valuedemandmuch of my time, I turn backto my leisure, and fust as wearied flocks too do, I quicken my pace towardshome. I resolveto confine my life within its own walls: "Let no one," I say,"who will make me no worthy return for such a loss rob me of a single day; let my mind be fixed upon itself, let it cultivate itself, let it busy itself with nothing outside, nothing that looks towards an umpire; let it love the tranquillity that is remore from public and privateconcern."But when my mind fanimus) has been arousedby reading of great bravery,and noble exampleshave applied the spur, I want to rush into the forum, to lend my voice to one man; to offer such assistance to another as, even if it will not help, will be an effort to help; or to check the pride of someonein the forum who has been unfortunately puffed up by his successes. (3) And in my literary studiesI think that it is surelybetter to fix my eyeson the theme itself, and, keeping this uppermost when I speak, trust meanwhileto the theme to to supply the words so that unstudiedlanguage may follow it wherever leads. say:"rVhat needis thereto comit I posesomethingthat will last for centuries? Will you not give up striving to keep posterity silent about you? You were born for death; a silent funeral is less troublesome! And so to passthe time, write something in simple style, for your own use, not for publication; they that study for

the day have less need to labor." Then again, when my has been uplifted by the greatnessof its mind fanimu.s] ambitiousof words,and with highthoughts,it becomes and language it desireshigher expression' er aspirations of the theme; forgetful issuesforth to match the dignity then of my rule and of my more restrainediudgment' I am swept to loftier heights by an utterance that is no longer my own. Not to indulge longer in details,I am all things attended ofgood intention.In fact I fear that I am by this weakness me even more gradually losing ground, or, what causes I am hanging like one who is alwayson the worry, that vergeof falling, and that perhapsI am in a more serious condition than I myself perceive;for we take a favorable view of our private matters, and partiality always hampers our judgment. I fancy that many men would have arrived at wisdom if they had not fancied that they had about certain alreadyarrived,if they had not dissembled by traits in their characterand passed otherswith their that eyesshut. For there is no reasonfor you to suppose peopleis more ruinous to us than the adulationof other our own. Who dares to tell himself the truth? \fho' though he is surrounded by a horde of applauding sycophants, is not for all that his own greatestflatterer?I beg you, therefore, if you have any remedy by which you could stopthis fluctuationof mine, to deemme worthy of being indebted to you for tranquillity. I know that these mental disturbancesof mine are not dangerousand give what I complain of in no promiseof a storm; to express apt metaphor, I am distressed,not by a tempest, but by Do sea-sickness. you, then, take from me this trouble'


r I ^l?t I sS SPEÊCH

whateverit be, and rush to the rescueof one who is strue_ gling in full sight of land.r16 At first glance, Serenus'long description appearsto be an accumularion of relatively unimportant details about his likes and dislikes, descriptions of trifles such as his father,s heavy plates,how he likes his food, and so on. And it also seemsto be in great disorder, a mess of details. But behind this appar_ ent disorderyou can easilydiscernthe real organizationofthe text. There are three basic parts to the discourse. The first part, the beginning of the quote, is devoted to Serenus,rela_ tion to wealth, possessions, domestic and private life. The his - secondpart-which begins',I resolveto obey the commands of my teache1s..."-1his paragraphdeals with Serenus,rela_ tion to public life and his political character.And in the third part-which starts at "And in my literary studies..."_ - Serenus speaksofhis literary activiry, rhe rype oflanguage he prefers to emplog and so on. But \ryecan also recognize here the relation between death and immortality, or the question of an enduring life in people's memories after death. So the three themes treated in these paragraphsare (l) private or domestic life; (2) public life; and (3) immortality or afterlife. In the first part Serenus explainswhat he is willing to do, and what he likes to do. He thereby also shows what he con_ siders unimportanr and to which he is indifferent. And all thesedescriptions show Serenus, positive image and character. He doesnor have great material needsin his domestic life, for he is not attached to luxury. In the second paragraph he says he is not enslaved ambition. He doesnot wanr a greatpolit_ by

but to be of serviceto others.And in the third paraical career, graph he statesthat he is not seducedby high-flown rhetoric) You can seethat trut prefersinsteadto adhereto useful speech. sheetofhis choices,of draws up a balance in this way Serenus his freedom,and the result is not bad at all. Indeed, it is quite positive. Serenus attachedto what is natural, to what is necis essary, what is useful (either for himself or his friends), and to is usually indifferent to the rest. Regarding these three fields (private life, public life, and afterlife),well, all rold' Serenusis rather a good fellow. And his accountalsoshowsus the precise topic of his examination,which is: what are the things that are important to me, and what are the things to which I am indifferent? And he considers important things which really are important. But each of the three paragraphsis also divided into two parts. After Serenus explains the importance or indifference he attributesto things, there is a transitional moment when he beginsto make an obiection to himself, when his mind begins to waver.These transitional moments are marked by his useof the word animus.Regarding the three topics already noted, Serenusexplains that despite the fact that he makes good choices,that he disregardsunimportant things, he nonetheless feels that his mind, his animus,is involuntarily moved. And as a result, although he is not exactly inclined to behave in an opposite fashion, he is still dazzledor arousedby the things he previously thought unimportant. These involuntary feelings are indications, he believes, that his animus is not completely tranquil or stable,and this motivates his request for a consultation. Serenusknows the theoretical principles and practicalrules of Stoicism,is usually able to put them into operation,yet he still feelsthat theserules are not a permanent matrix for his behavior, his feelings, and his thoughts'

iO io..",

"On the Tianquillity of Mind,', L ,l-17.

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whatever be, and rush to the rescue it ofone who is strug_ gling in full sight of land.r16 At first glance, Serenus,long description appearsto be an accumulationof relatively unimportant details about his likes and dislikes, descriptions of trifles such as his father's heavy plates,how he likes his food, and so on. And ir also seems ro be in great disorder, a mess of details. But behind this appar_ ent disorder you can easily discern the real organization of the text. There are three basic parts to the discourse. The first part, the beginning of the quote, is devoted to Serenus' rela_ tion to wealth, possessions, domesticand private life. The his - second part-which begins .,I resolve to obey the commands of my teachers..."-this paragraphdeals with Serenus'rela_ tion to public life and his political character. And in the third part-which starts at ,ând in my literary studies..."_ - Serenus speaks ofhis literary acrivity,the type oflanguage he prefers to employ, and so on. But we can also recognize here the relation between death and immortality, or the question of an enduring life in people's memories after death. So the three themes treated in these paragraphsare (l) private or domestic life; (2) public life; and (3) immortality or afterlife. In the first parr Serenusexplains what he is willing to do, and what he likes to do. He thereby also showswhat he con_ siders unimportanr and to which he is indifferent. And all thesedescriptionsshow Serenus'positive imageand character. He doesnot have great material needsin his domestic life, for he is not attached to luxury. In the second paragraph he says he is not enslaved ambition. He doesnot wanr a greatpolit_ by

ical career, but to be ofservice to others.And in the third paragraph he statesthat he is not seducedby high-flown rhetoric, You can seethat but prefersinsteadto adhereto useful speech. in this way Serenus draws up a balancesheetofhis choices,of his freedom,and the result is not bad at all. Indeed, it is quite positive. Serenus attachedto what is natural, to what is necis to essary, what is useful (either for himself or his friends), and is usually indifferent to the rest. Regarding these three fields (private life, public life, and afterlife),well, all told, Serenusis rather a good fellow And his accountalsoshowsus the precise topic of his examination,which is: what are the things that are important to me, and what are the things to which I am indifferent? And he considersimportant things which really are important. is But each of the three paragraphs also divided into two parts. After Serenusexplains the importance or indifference he attributes to things, there is a transitional moment when he beginsto make an oblection to himself, when his mind begins to waver.Thesetransitional momentsare marked by his useof the word animus.Regarding the three topics already noted, Serenusexplains that despite the fact that he makes good choices,that he disregardsuûimportant things, he nonetheless feels that his mind, his animus,is involuntarily moved. And as a result, although he is not exactly inclined to behave in an opposite fashion, he is still dazzledor arousedby the things he previously thought unimportant. These involuntary feelings are indications, he believes,that his animus is not completely tranquil or stable,and this motivates his request for a consultation. Serenusknows the theoretical principles and practicalrules of Stoicism,is usually able to put them into operation,yet he still feelsthat theserules are not a permanent matrix for his behavior, his feelings, and his thoughts.

tU. ,.n..", "On the Tranquillity of Mind,,, I. ,t-17.



Serenus'instability does not derive from his ,,sins,,'or from the fact that he exists as a temporal being-as in Augustine, for example.It stems from the fact that he has nor yer succeeded harmonizing his actions and thoughts with the ethin ical structure he haschosenfor himself. It is asif Serenus were a good pilot, he knows how to sail, there is no storm on the horizon, yet he is stuck at seaand cannot reachthe solid earth because doesnot possess he thetranquillitas, thefirmitas,which comesfrom complete self-sovereignty. And Seneca's reply to this self-examinationand moral request is an exploration of the nature of this stability of mind. Self-testing A third text, which also shows some of the differencesin the truth games involved in these self-examination exercises, comes from the Discourses of Epictetus-where I think you can find a third rype ofexercise quite different from the previous ones. There are numerous types of self-examination techniquesand practicesin Epictetus, some of them resembling both the evening examinationsof Sextiusand the general self-scrutinyof Serenus. But there is one form of examination which, I think, is very characteristicof Epictetus, and which takes the form of a constant putting on trial of all our representations. This technique is also related to the demand for stability; for given the constant stream ofrepresentations which flow into the mind, Epictetus' problem consists in knowing how to distinguish those represenrations that he can control from those that he cannot control, that incite involuntary emotions,feelings,behavior,etc.,and that must therefore be excludedfrom his mind. Epictetus'solution is that we must adopt an attitude of permanentsurveillancewith regard to all our representations, and he explains this attitude by employ-

ing two metaphors: the metaphor of the nightwatchman or doorkeeper who does not admit anyone into his house or palace without first checkinghis identity; and the metaphorof the "money-changer"-1ryhat the Greeks called the ctp1lpoporpôç-who, when a coin is very difficult to read' verihes the authenticity of the currency, examines it, weighs it, verifres the metal and effigy,and so on: of The third topic has to do with cases assenqit is concernedwith the things that are plausibleand attractive. usedto tell us not to live a life unsubFor, iust as Socrates jectedto examination, we ought not to accepta senseso to impressionunsubiected examination,but should say' "Wait, allow me to see who you are and whence you come" (iust as the night-watch say, "Show me your tokens")."Do you haveyour tokensfrom nature,the ones which is to be accepted which every sense-impression must have)"rr7 These two metaphors are also found in early Christian Cassian[4.D. 360-435],for example'askedhis texts.Johannes monks to scrutinize and test their own representationslike In a doorkeeperor a money-changer.rrs the caseof Christian self-examination,the monitoring of representationshas the specific intention of determining whether, under an apparently innocent guise, the devil himself is not hiding. For in order not to be trapped by what only seemsto be innocent, in order to avoid the devil's counterfeit coins, the Christian must deter-

as I 17. Epictetus, The Discourses Reported by Artiaz, Tians. !01 A. Oldfather,

nI, 12.
l l8. Cf. Michel Foucault, "Sexuality and Solitude"'6.



mine where his thoughts and senseimpressionscome from, and what relation actually exists between a representation's apparent and real value. For Epictetus, however, the problem is not to determine the source of the impression (God or Satan)so as to judge whether ir conceals somerhingor nor; his problem is rather to determine whether the impressionrepre_ sentssomethingwhich dependsupon him or not) i.e.,whether it is accessible nor to his will. Its purposeis not to dispel the or devil's illusions, but to guarantee self-mastery. To foster mistrust of our representations, Epictetus pro_ poses two kinds of exercises.One form is borrowed directly from the Sophists.And in this classicalgameof the sophistic schools, one ofthe studentsaskeda question,and another stu_ dent had ro answer it without falling into the sophistic trap. An elemenrary example of this sophistic game is this one: Question: "Can a chariot go through a mouth?',Answer: .,yes. You yourself said the word, chaiot, and it went through your mouth." Epictetus criticized such exercises unhelpful, and as proposed another for the purpose of moral training. In this game there are also ttvo partners. One of the parrners states a fact, an event, and the other has to answer,as quickly aspos_ sible, whether this fact or event is good or evil, i.e., is within or beyond our control. W'ecan seethis exercise, example, for in the following texr: As we exercise ourselves meet the sophistical to interro_ gations,so we ought also to exercise ourselves daily to meet the impressionof our senses, because thesetoo put interrogationsto us. So-and-so's son is dead. Answer. "That lies outsidethe sphereof the moral purpose,it is not an evil." His father has disinheritedSo_and_so: what do you think of it? "'Ihat lies outsidethe sphereof the

moral purpose,it is not an evil." Caesarhas condemned him. "That lies outsidethe sphereof the moral purpose, it is not an evil." He was grievedat all this. "That lies within the sphereof the moral purpose,it is an evil." He has borne up under it manfully. "That lies within the sphere of the moral purpose, it is a good." Now if we acquire this habit, we shall make progress;for we shall never give our assentto anything but that ofwhich we gel a convincingsense-impression.rre There is another exercise Epictetus describes which has the sameobiect, but the form is closer to those employed later in the Christian tradition. It consistsin walking through the streetsof the city and asking yourself whether any representation that happens to come to your mind depends upon your will or not. If it doesnot lie within the province of moral purposeand will, then it must be rejected: Go out of the house at early dawn, and no matter whom you seeor whom you hear,examine him and then answer as you would to a question. \7hat did you see?A handsomeman or a handsome woman?Apply your rule. Is it outside the province of the moral purpose, or inside? A Outside. Away with it. \7hat did you see? man in grief your rule. Death lies over the death of his child? Apply outside the province of the moral purpose.Out of the way with it. Did a Consul meet you? Apply your rule. \7hat sort of thing is a consulship?Outside the province of the moral purpose, or inside? Outside. Away with it, too, it

I 19. Epictetus, Thc Discourses Reported b1 Atrinn,lll,8. as

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doesnot meet the test; throw it away,it does not concern you. If we had kept doing this and had exercisedourselvesfrom dawn till dark with this principle in mindby the gods,somethingwould have b..n u.hi.u.d"ro As you can see,Epictetuswants us to constitutea world of representations where nothing can intrude which is not subject to the sovereigntyofour will. So,again,self-sovereignty is the organizing principle of this form of self-examination. I would have liked to have analyzed two more texts from Marcus Aurelius, but given the hour, I have no time left for this. So I would now like to turn to my conclusions. In reading these texts about selÊexamination and underlining the differences between them, I wanted ro show you, first, that there is a noticeable shift in the parrhesiastic practices between the "master" and the .disciple." previously, when pathesia appeared in the context of spiritual guidance, the master was the one who disclosed the truth about the disciple. In these exercises, the master still uses frankness of speechwith the disciple in order to help him become aware of the faults he cannot see (Seneca uses panhesin towards Serenus, Epictetus vsespaffhesia rowards his disciples); but now the use of parrhesrais put increasingly upon the disciple as his own duty towardshimself. At this point the truth about the disciple is not disclosedsolely through the parrhesiastic discourse of the master, or only in the dialogue between the master and the disciple or interlocutor. The truth about the disciple emerges from a personalrelation which he establish-

120. Ibid.,3. MichelFoucault, Souci soi,79-Bl; Cf. Le de Foucault interview: "On the Genealogy of Ethics," 249.

es with himself: and this truth can now be disclosed either to himself (as in the first example from Seneca)or to someone And the disciple else(as in the secondexamplefrom Seneca). must also test himself, and check to seewhether he is able to achieveself-mastery (as in the examplesfrom Epictetus). Secondly,it is not sufficient to analyze this personal relation of self-understanding as merely deriving from the general principle "gnothi sssv16n"-"l4now thyself." Of course, in a certain generalsenseit can be derived from this principle, but we cannot stop at this point. For the various relationships which one has to oneselfare embeddedin very precisetechniques which take the form of spiritual exercises-some of them dealing with deeds,others with statesof equilibrium of the soul, others with the flow ofrepresentations,and so on. Third point. In all these different exercises,what is at stake is not the disclosureofa secretwhich has to excavated from out of the depths of the soul. What is at stake is the relation of the self to truth or to some rational principles. Recall that the question which motivated Seneca'sevening selfexamination was: Did I bring into play those principles of behavior I know very well, but, as it sometimeshappens,I do not alwaysconform to or alwaysapply?Another questionwas: Am I able to adhere to the principles I am familiar with' I agree with, and which I practicemost of the time? For that was Serenus'question. Or the question Epictetus raised in the exercises was just discussing:Am I able to react to any kind I which showsitself to me in conformity with of representation my adopted rational rules? \fhat we have to underline here is is this: ifthe truth ofthe selfin theseexercises nothing other than the relationof the self to truth, then this truth is not purely theoretical.The truth of the self involves,on the one hand, a set of rational principles which are grounded in general


statementsabout the world, human life, necessity,happiness, freedom, and so on, and, on the other hand, practical rules for behavior. And the question which is raised in these different exercisesis oriented towards the following problem: Are we familiar enough with these rational principles? Are they suIficiently well-established in our minds to becomepractical rules for our everyday behavior? And the problem of memory is at the heart ofthese techniques, but in the form ofan attempt to we have done, thought, or felt so that remind ourselvesof what we may reactivate our rational principles, thus making them as permanent and as effective as possible in our life. These exercisesare part of what we could call an "aesthetics of the self." For one does not have to take up a position or role towards oneself as that of a judge pronouncing a verdict. One can comport oneself towards oneself in the role of a technician, of a craftsman, of an artist, who from time to time stops working, examines what he is doing, reminds himself of the rules of his art, and compares these rules with what he has achievedthus far. This metaphor of the artist who stops working, stepsback, gains a distant perspective, and examineswhat he is actually doing with the principles of his art can be found in Plutarcrr*s essay, "On the Control of Anger" [Ilep't copyqoio4].t"

rt s Concluding I{crrr l'l<

l2l. Plutarch writes: "A good plan, as it seems to me...is that which painters follow: tley scrutinize their productions from time to time before they finish them. They do this because, by withdrawing their gaze and by inspecting their work often, they are able to form a fresh judgment, and one which is more likely to seize upon any slight discrepancy, such as the familiarity of unintemrpted contemplation will conceal." ['lJn the Control of Anger," Tians. W. C. Helmbold, 452f453a)


And now a few words about this seminar. The point of departure.My intention was not to deal with the problem of truth, but with the problem of the truth-teller, or of truth-telling as an activity. By this I mean that, for me, it wâs not a question of analyzing the internal or external criteria that would enablethe Greeksand Romans,or anyone else, to recognize whether a statementor proposition is true or not. At issuefor me was rather the attempt to considertruth-telling as a specific activity, or as a role. But even in the framework of this generalquestion of the role of the truth-teller in a society, there were severalpossibleways to conduct the analysis.For instance,I could have compared the role and status of truthtellers in Greek society, Christian societies, non-Christian societies-the role of the prophet as a truth-teller, the role of the oracle as a truth-teller, the role of the poet, of the expert, of the preacher,and so on. But, in fact, my intention was not to conduct a sociologicaldescription of the different possible roles for truth-tellers in different societies.\ûhat I wanted to analyze was how the truth-teller's role was variously problematized in Greek philosophy. And what I wanted to show you was that if Greek philosophy has raised the problem of truth from the point of view of the criteria for true statements and sound reasoning,this same Greek philosophy has also raised the question of truth from the point of view of truthtelling as an activity. It has raised questionslike: \ù7hois able to tell the truth? rù(hatare the moral, the ethical, and the spiritual conditions which entitle someoneto present himself as, and to be consideredas,a truth-teller? About what topics is it important to tell the truth? (About the world? About nature? About the city? About behavior? About man?) !ùflhatare the consequences telling the truth? \7hat are its anticipated of positive effects for the city, for the city's rulers, for the

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individual?, etc. And finally: rù(hatis the relation betweenthe j activity of truth-telling and rhe exerciseof power? Should truth-telling be brought into coincidencewith the exercise of i' power, or should these activities be completely independent and kept separate? Are they separable, do they require one or another?Thesefour questionsabout truth-telling as an activity-who is able to tell the truth, about what, with what consequences, and with what relation to power-seem to have emerged as philosophical problems rowards the end of the Fifth Century around Socrates,especiallythrough his confrontations with the Sophists about politics, rhetorics, and ethics. And I would sayrhat the problematizationof truth which characterizes both the end of Presocraric philosophy and the beginning of the kind of philosophy which is still ours today, this problematization of truth has two sides, two major aspects. One side is concernedwith ensuring that the process of reasoningis correct in determining whether a statementis true (or concernsitself with our ability to gain access the to truth). And the other side is concernedwith the question: I7hat is the importancefor the individual and for the society of telling the truth, of knowing rhe truth, of having people who tell the truth, as well as knowing how to recognizethem? tù(/iththat side which is concernedwith determining how to ensure that a statementis true we have the roots of the great tradition in \ùTestern philosophy which I would like to call the "analyticsof truth." And on the other side,concernedwith the question of the importance of telling the truth, knowing who is able to tell the rruth, and knowing why we should tell the truth, we havethe roots of what we could call the "critical" tradition in the rJ(Iest. And here you will recognize one of my targets in this seminar, namely to construct a genealogy of the

critical attitude in \Testern philosophy. That constituted the general objective target of this seminar. From the methodological point of view, I would like to underscore the following theme. As you may have noticed, I utilized the word problcmatizatbnfrequently in this seminar without providing you with an explanation of its meaning. I told you very briefly that what I intended to analyze in most of my work was neither past people'sbehavior (which is something that belongs to the field of social history), nor ideas in I their representativevalues.\Ù7hat tried to do from the beginning was to analyze the processof "problematization"- which means: how and why certain things (behavior, phenomena, processes)became a problem.t22 \7hy, for example, certain forms of behavior were characterized and classified as "madness"while other similar forms were completely neglectedat a given historical momentl the samething for crime and delinquency,the same question of problematization for sexuality. Some people have interpreted this type of analysis as a form of "historical idealism," but I think that such an analysis is completelydifferent. For when I say that I am studying the "problematization" of madness,crime, or sexuality' it is not a way of denying the reality of such phenomena.On the contrary, I have tried to show that it was precisely some real existent in the world which was the target of social regulation at a given moment. The question I raise is this one: How and why were very different things in the world gathered together, characterized, analyzed,and treated as, for example, "mental illness"? \ù[hat are the elements which are relevant for a given "problematization"?And even if I won't say that what is char-

16-19. des /jUscge plaisirs, 122. MichelFoucault, Cf.



acterizedas "schizophrenia"corresponds somethingreal in to the world, this has nothing to do with idealism. For I think there is a relation between the thing which is problematized and the processof problematization.The problematizationis an "answer" to a concretesituation which is real. There is also a mistaken interpretation according to which my analysisof a given problematizationis without any process historical context, as if it were a spontaneous coming from anywhere. In fact, however, I have tried to show, for instance,that the new problematizationof illness or physical disease the end ofthe l8th Century was very directly linked at to a modification in various practices, or to the development of a new social reaction to diseases, to the challengeposed or by certain processes, and so on. But we have to understand very clearly,I think, that a given problematizationis not an effect or consequence a historical context or situation, but is of an answer given by definite individuals (although you may find this sameanswer given in a seriesof texts, and at a certain point the ânswermay becomeso generalthat it also becomes anonymous). For example, with regard to the way that panhesia was problematizedat a given moment, we can see that there are specilic Socratic-Platonic answersto the questions:How can we recognize someone as a panhesiastes? \7hat is the importance of havin g a parrhesiastes the city? \7hat is the training for of a good panhesiastes?-answers which were given by Socrates Plato. These answersare not collectiveones from or any sort ofcollective unconscious. And the fact that an answer is neither a representation nor an effect of a situation doesnot mean that it answersto nothing, that it is a pure dream, or an "anti-creation." A problematization is always a kind of creation; but a creation in the sensethat, given a certain situa-

tion, you cannot infer that this kind of problematizationwill follow. Given a certain problematization, you can only understand why this kind of answer appearsas a reply to some concrete and specific aspectof the world. There is the relation of thought and reality in the processof problematization. And that is the reason why I think that it is possible to give an analysis of a specific problematization as the history of an answer-the original, specific, and singular answer of thoughr-to a certain situation. And it is this kind of specific relation betweentruth and reality which I have tried to analyze in the various problematizations of panhesn.

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Sruorgsox Pnnnnesta
Ancient Authors PHILODEMUS. Tèubneri. 19I4. flepi nappqoro,ç. Ed. Alexander Olivleri; Leipzig: B. G.

PLUTARCH. "How to Tèll a Flatterer fiom a Friend." Tians. Frank Cole Babbitt in Plunrch\ Moralia, Vol. l; Cambridge and London: Harvard & Heinemann, 1969 (Loeb Classical Library); 26t-t95. Modern Authors BARTELINK, Gerhardus Johannes Marinus. "Quelques observations sur napploto dans la littérature paléo-chrétienne," in Graecitas et Latinitds pimaeoa, Supp. III; Nifmegen: Dekker & Van de Vegt, 1970; Christianorum

COQUIN, R. G. "Le thème de la ncrppqotcr et ses expressions symboliques dans les rites d'initiation à Antioche," in Proche-Orient chrétien 20 ( 1 9 7 0 ) :3 - 1 9 . DEIù(/ITT' Norman \f. "Parrhesiastic Poems of Horace," Classicul Philolos 30 (1935): 312-319. ENGELS, L. "Fiducia dans la Vulgate, Le problème de la traduction ntrlr prloio-fiducia," in C,raecitaset Latinitas Christianorum primaeva, Supp. Ir Nijmegen: Dekker & Van de Vegt, 1964; 97-141. GIGANTE, Marcello. "Filodemo sulla libertà di parola," in his Riccrr*, Filodemee; Napoli: Gaetano Macchiaroli Editore, 1969; 4l-61. -. "Philodème: Sur la liberté de parole." inActes du VIII'Congrés (l'urt:. 5-10 aoril 1968), Association Guillaume Budé; Paris: Société d'Edirr,,rr "Les Belles Lettres," 1969;196-217 [French translation ofabove]. "Motivi paideutici nell' opera filodemea sulla libertà di parolrr CronacheErcolanesi 4 (1974): 38-)9. '


HOLSTEIN, H. "La ncrppqoiû, dans le Nouveau Testament," in lil,/, si-echrétienne ( 1963): 45-54. 53



IAEGER, Hasso. "flcrpprloicr et fiducia. Étude spirituelle des mots," in StudiaPatristicaI (Berlin, 1957):221-239. JOUÔ\ Paul. "Divers sensde nctppqota dansle NouveauTèstament," 30 de religieuse (1940):239-242. Rechuches Science Lexieon;Oxford, 1968; LAMPE, C.V/.H."flcrppqau" inA Patistic Ctteeh cols.10,14-1046. LIDDELL, Henry G. & SCOTI Robert."flopprlotcr" inl Cneek-English LexiconOxford; ClarendonPress,1968[Ninth Edition]; 13'14. MIQUEL, Pierre. "flcrppqoicr" in Dittionnaire tle Spiritualité,Vol. 12; 1984;cols.260-267. Paris: Beauchesne, in MOMIGLIANO, Arnaldo. "Freedomof Speech Antiquity" in Philip P \ù(iener, ed. Dictionary of the History of ldeas, Vol. 2; New York: Sons,1973;252-261. Charles Scribner's von flapplotct," in PETERSON, Erik. "Zur Bedeutungsgeschichte rùûilhelmKoepp, ed.,ReinholdSeeberg Vol. I: Zur Theorie des Festschift, D. Christentums;Leipzig: A. DeichertscheVerlagsbuchhandlung Werner Scholl, 1929;283-297. PHILIPPSON, Robert. Rezension von Philodemi, flep't roppr1oroç; lVochenschift (1916): 677488. 36 BerlinerPhilologische in RADIN, Max. "Freedomof Speech Ancient Athens,"American Journal of Philolost 48 (1927):215-230. RAHNER, Karl. "flcrpprloto von der Apostolatstugenddes Christen," Geist undLeben (1958):l-6. 31 RODRIGUEZ, J. V "flcppqotcr teresiana,"Reùsta de Espiituahdad 40 (1981):527-573. SCARPAI Giuseppe.Panhesia.Storia del rerminee delle sue traduzioni Editrice,1964. Paideia in LatinotBrescia:

roppnordçopûr" in Gerhard Kittel, SCHLIER, Heinrich. "flopplotcr, Vol. 5; Grand Rapids: I7m. ed.,Theological Dictionary of the New Tèstament, B. Eerdmans, 1967; 87I-886. SMOLDERS, D. "Ijaudace de I'apôtre selon saint Paul, Le thème de la nopprloro," Collecwnea Mechliniensia 43 (Louvain, 1958): l-30; ll7-113. Ifilhelm. STÀHLI\ "Parousia und Parrhesia,' in Leo Scheffczyk, lVerner Deffloff, und Richard Heinzmann, eds., lYahrheit und Verkùndignzg; Paderborn: Schoningh, 1967; 229-235. B. "Ila,ppqoio-praesumptio in der Klosterregel St. STEIDLE, Benedikts," in Zeugnis des Geistes; Beuron: Beuroner Kunstverlag, 1947; 4Mr. TOMADAKES, N. B. Ilcppqorcr-rtrppnorcrortrôç" Byzantinôn Spoudôn 33 (1964): fasc. l. in Epèteris Hetaireias

\ùfl C. De Semitische Achtergrond oan llapprlcia In Het VAN UNNIK, Nieutpe Testamezt;Amsterdam: Noord-Hollandsche Uitg. Mii., 1962. -. "The Christian's Freedom of Speech in the New ïbstament," Bulletin of theJohn Rylnnds Libraty 44 (1962):46988. -. in the 'Catechetical Homilies' of Theodore of "tlopprloio Mopsuestia," in Mélanges ffiræ à Mademoiselle Christine Mohrmann; Utrecht-Anvers, 1963; 12-22. VOSTER, lÙf. S., "The Meaning of lloppqora Hebrews," Neotestamenica (I971): 5l-59. 5 in the Epistle to the

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