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Cambridge AHRC Doctoral Training Partnership - Student Profiles



I took my MPhil in Political Thought and Intellectual History at Cambridge in 2017, focusing on the place of the body, scientific method and nascent probability theory in Thomas Hobbes and his contemporary Richard Cumberland. 

My PhD, provisionally entitled 'Michel Foucault and the Critical Practice of the History of Thought, 1970-1984', is an attempt to restore the dimension of the history of thought to Foucault's genealogical work in the last decades of his life. The many important concepts which Foucault introduced in his books and lectures were framed within broader historical narratives, which served to historicise and implicitly critique his contemporaries' discourses and the objects of their thought. Bringing out the significance of these narratives will help to clarify current debates about Foucault's relationship to topics like ethics and neoliberalism. But it also gives us a picture of how Foucault might fit into a longer-running story about historicism and the value of 'the present' in French thought from the 1950s to the advent of 'postmodernity'.

Other Academic Interests

Thomas Hobbes and the overlap between 17th-century medicine, natural philosophy and civil philosophy 

Perceptions of the 1970s in French, British and German intellectual history

The uses of intellectual history in twentieth-century political thought

Department: History
Supervisor: Dr. Christopher Meckstroth
College: Christ's
AHRC subject area: Intellectual History
Title of thesis: Michel Foucault and the Critical Practice of the History of Thought, 1970-1984
 Luke  Ilott