This book offers an account of the emergence of Christianity from the Ancient World. Here Foucault describes the stranger byways of Greek medicine (with its advice on the healthiest season for sex as well as on exercise and diet), the permitted ways of courting young boys, and the economists' ideas about the role of women. The book abounds in insights into the differences - and the continuities - between the Ancient, Christian and Modern worlds. But Foucault does far more than merely recreate a vanished era when sex was not a major moral issue (only Plato, like Saint Paul, saw puritanical restraint as the way of wisdom), but makes us rethink all our own assumptions about sex.
One of the leading intellectuals of the twentieth century and the most prominent thinker in post-war France, Foucault's work influenced disciplines as diverse as history, sociology, philosophy, sociology and literary criticism.
Part 1 Introduction: modifications; forms of problematization; morality and practice of the self. Part 2 The moral problematization of pleasures: "Aphrodisia"; "Chresis"; "Enkrateia"; freedom and truth. Part 3 Dietetics: regimen in general; the diet of pleasures; risks and dangers; act, expenditure, death. Part 4 Economics: the wisdom of marriage; Ischomachus' household; three policies of moderation. Part 5 Erotics: a problematic relation; a boy's honour; the object of pleasure. Part 6 True love.