Michel Foucault (1926–1984) was a French philosopher, historian, social theorist, and philologist. He lectured in universities throughout the world; served as the director at the Institut Français in Hamburg, Germany, and at the Institute de Philosophie at the Faculté des Lettres in the University of Clermont-Ferrand, France; and wrote frequently for French newspapers and reviews. At the time of his death in 1984, he held a chair at France's most prestigious institution, the Collège de France.
One of the leading intellectuals of the twentieth century and the most prominent thinker in post-war France, Foucault's work influenced disciplines as diverse as history, sociology, philosophy, sociology, and literary criticism. His works include The Order of Things: An Archaeology of the Human Sciences; Madness and Civilization: A History of Insanity in the Age of Reason; and Death and the Labyrinth: The World of Raymond Roussel.
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