In this first volume Negri shows how the thinking of Marx and Foucault were brought together to create an original theoretical synthesis - particularly in the context of Italy from May ’68 onwards. At around that time, the structures of industry and production began to change radically, with the emergence of new producer-subjects and new fields of capitalist value creation. New concepts and theories were developed by Foucault, Deleuze and Guattari and others to help make sense of these and related developments - concepts such as biopower and biopolitics, subjectivation and subsumption, public and common, power and potentiality. These concepts and theories are examined by Negri within the broader context of the development of European philosophical discourse in the twentieth century.
Marx and Foucault provides a unique account of the development of radical thought in the late 20th and early 21st centuries and will be a key text for anyone interested in radical politics today.
Similar features have marked collective resistances from the Zapatistas and the Seattle protests onwards, giving rise to theoretical and practical debates over the importance of these ideological and political forms. By engaging with the controversy between the autonomous, biopolitical ‘multitude’ of Hardt and Negri and the arguments in favour of the hegemony of ‘the people’ advanced by J. Rancière, E. Laclau, C. Mouffe and S. Žižek the central aim of this book is to discuss these instances of collective mobilization, to probe the innovative practices and ideas they have developed and to debate their potential to reinvigorate democracy whilst seeking something better than ‘disaster capitalism’.