Daniel Defert was Michel Foucault’s partner for more than the last 20 years of his life. A student during the early 1960s, he supported the Algerian liberation movement, participated in the activist Gauche prolétarienne and, together with Foucault, founded GIP (Groupe d’information sur les prisons), a group that gathered and published information about the conditions in French prisons. After Foucault died in 1984 of AIDS, without having been given the precise diagnosis by any of his doctors, Defert founded AIDES, to this day the largest organization for the support of HIV-positive people and people with AIDS in France. AIDES started out as a network of mutual assistance and care but also exerted political influence and fought against the discrimination of HIV-positive people and the vilification of homosexuality. The Berlin publisher Merve has just issued the German translation of Defert’s interview biography A Political Life
. The conversation with Cord Riechelmann will revolve around the historical context of the political struggles which Defert and Foucault engaged in and critical questions about the relation between society and homosexuality that are still with us today.
Daniel Defert, born in 1937, is a sociologist, philosopher, activist and founder of the organization AIDES, which he presided over until 1991. He has served as co-editor of the writings of Michel Foucault.
Cord Riechelmann is a biologist, philosopher, and author who writes, among others, for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung and Jungle World.
Introduction by Elisa Barth (Merve)