BTS 7/18/05: Karl Rove; Foucault and the Iranian Revolution

Listen to the Show: Lou Dubose - Janet Afary/Kevin Anderson

On tonight’s Beneath the Surface we begin with the scandal that has legs – that is, the Karl Rove affair. Today’s LA Times shows that Rove was spearheading the White House's campaign against Ambassador Joseph Wilson and Rove was working with top aides to President Bush and VP Dick Cheney in their effort to discredit Wilson after he wrote in the NY Times that the administration manipulated intelligence to justify going to war in Iraq. Is this the US equivalent of the Downing Street Memo? We begin with veteran Rove and DeLay watcher from Texas, Lou Dubose.

And in the second half of the hour we turn to the Iranian Revolution and French Philosopher Michel Foucault, who embraced it. Janet Afary and Kevin Anderson join us in studio to discuss their new book, Foucault and the Iranian Revolution, which has relevance for our understanding of political Islam, religious fundamentalism and the attack on science and reason.

Read More for info on today's guests:

1. Lou Dubose is co-author (with Jan Reid) of Boy Genius: Karl Rove, The Brain Behind the Remarkable Political Triumph of George W. Bush, as well as a book about House Majority Leader Tom DeLay. Delay's nickname -- and the name of the book -- is The Hammer. DeLay was a small-town Texas exterminator who rose to be the most powerful man in Congress. Dubose was the editor of The Texas Observer for 11 years. He is also co-author, with Molly Ivins of Bushwhacked and Shrub.

2. Foucault and the Iranian Revolution, Kevin Anderson and Janet Afary, University of Chicago Press, 2005

25 years after the Iranian Revolution and twenty years after the death of Michel Foucault there is finally an account in English exploring his writings on the Iranian Revolution, what Kevin Anderson and Janet Afary see as reckless revolutionary romanticism from someone who should have known better.

This book brings us the documentary evidence of Foucault’s celebration of the Iranian revolution, much of which has never appeared in English. Included are his writings and his critics, including the “Atoussa H” controversy, as well as an astute analysis by both Afary and Anderson of Foucault’s ideas about power, sexuality, religion and his relationship to Heidegger, Freud, Nietzsche, the Enlightenment, the left and so much more.

Janet Afary – from Iran – is an Associate Professor of history and women’s studies at Purdue University and the author of The Iranian Constitutional Revolution, 1906-1911. She is also President of the International Society for Iranian Studies.

Kevin Anderson is Associate Professor of political science and sociology at Purdue and the author of Lenin, Hegel, and Western Marxism, and many other works discussed on this program, including most recently The Rosa Luxemburg Reader and Marx on Suicide.