The Product of Text and 'Other' Statements

Discourse analysis and the critical use of Foucault

Linda J. Graham*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

56 Citations (Scopus)


Much has been written on Michel Foucault's reluctance to clearly delineate a research method, particularly with respect to genealogy (Harwood, 2000; Meadmore, Hatcher & McWilliam, 2000; Tamboukou, 1999). Foucault (1994, p. 288) himself disliked prescription stating, 'I take care not to dictate how things should be' and wrote provocatively to disrupt equilibrium and certainty, so that 'all those who speak for others or to others' no longer know what to do. It is doubtful, however, that Foucault ever intended for researchers to be stricken by that malaise to the point of being unwilling to make an intellectual commitment to methodological possibilities. Taking criticism of 'Foucauldian' discourse analysis as a convenient point of departure to discuss the objectives of poststructural analyses of language, this paper develops what might be called a discursive analytic; a methodological plan to approach the analysis of discourses through the location of statements that function with constitutive effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)663-674
Number of pages12
JournalEducational Philosophy and Theory
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011


  • Discourse analysis
  • Foucault
  • Qualitative research in education

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