The Order of Things &/vs What is Philosophy?

A question for readers of Foucault and D&G:

Toward the end of OT, Foucault writes that the modern episteme’s domain should be seen as a trihedral space:

a) “mathematical and physical sciences, for which order is always a deductive and linear linking together of evident or verified propositions”

b) “the sciences (such as those of language, life, and the production and distribution of wealth) that proceed by relating discontinuous but analogous elements in such a way tha they are then able to establish causal relations and structural constants between them.”

c) “philosophical reflection”

(page 346-7 of the 1994 Vintage edition)

My question is how does this relate to the three planes that D&G lay out in What is Philosophy? I don’t have that book in front of me and haven’t read it in years, but as I see it they seemingly collapse the first two of Foucault’s domains into the plane of reference, maintain the domain of philosophical reflection as the plane of immanence/conceptual personae relationship, and add the artist’s plane of composition as their third.

Does anyone have insight into why D&G might have made this displacement? What did they find lacking in Foucault’s scheme? Does anyone have a reference to any work exploring this difference?

Moreover, in philosophical terms, is this something that one would call an epistemological difference? Or would one call it two different theories of knowledge?

It is times like now that I would benefit from a properly philosophical pedigree…

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One Response to The Order of Things &/vs What is Philosophy?

  1. edmundberger says:

    It’s hard for me to speculate properly on your interesting question, having not read either book in a very long time (and not really liking What is Philosophy? for that matter), but for what it’s worth I’ve also seen the points where Foucault and Deleuze and Guattari meet as a complementary relationship, where Foucault has a sort of diagnosis of how power works and Deleuze and Guattari look at ways in which this power can be circumvented (the relationship between Discipline and Punish and Anti-Oedipus is exemplary in this regard). That’s one of the reasons they place such a high emphasis on art: it looks forwards, breaks new ground (deterritorialization) and can even ‘engender’ divergent social formations. By the time we get to What is Philosophy this position has shifted from art to the threefold relationship between art and science with philosophy acting as the mediating third; I would suspect that this formulation has less to do with Foucault’s early analysis (though his comments on the relationships between limit experiences and artists is illuminating) and more to do with trying to formulate a high theory for how nomadic thought works.

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