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Interview with Daniel Defert

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posted on 11.03.2021, 09:45 by Robert Gildea
Defert, Daniel
Algerian War/ /Maoism/ Gauche Prolétarienne/ Groupe d’Information sur les Prisonniers /AIDES

Family
Born Avallon, Yonne/Burgundy, 19 Sept 1937. Parents hairdressers/perfumers, mother of Ukrainian Jewish origin, father from Jansenist/Catholic Puritan background

Education
College of Avallon (1949-54), then Lycée du Parc at Lyon, to prepare for École Normale Supérieure. Attended ENS Saint-Cloud 1960. Introduced to Foucault by University of Lyon professor Robert Mauzi. Lived with Foucault rue Dr Finlay 1963. Agrégation in philosophy 1964.

Political Apprenticeship
Politicised by Algerian war. Helped organise student demonstration at La Mutualité, 27 Oct 1960. Did Cooperation (civil alternative to military service) in Tunisia 1964. Researcher at CNRS/Fondation Thiers (1966-8).

1968
Spectator rather than activist, looking on to night of barricades with Pierre Nora and François Furet. Impressed by Comité de lutte péderastique in Sorbonne. Lecturer in sociology at new University of Versailles 1969, where Foucault taught philosophy.

Post 1968
Joined Gauche Prolétarienne after it was dissolved 27 May 1970 and leading activists were arrested. Set up Groupe d’Information sur les Prisonniers (GIP) to spread information about prison conditions. Inspired by Attica prison revolt in USA and riots in French prisons. Part of Comité de Défense de la Vie des Immigrés.
Founded AIDES, based on Terrence Higgins Trust, after death of Foucault 1984. Prioritised medical support and education for and about AIDS rather than gay activism.

Around 1968

Categories

Keywords

Funding

Around 1968: Activism, Networks, Trajectories

Arts and Humanities Research Council

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History

Date of interview

07/04/2008

Place of interview

Paris

Name of activist

Daniel Defert

Activist date of birth

10/09/1937

Activist Gender

Male

Activist nationality

French

Name of interviewer

Robert Gildea

Name of transcriber

Koisse SAID

Licence

Exports

Around 1968

Categories

Keywords

Licence

Exports