Generating great controversy on its publication in France last year, The Mediocracy argues that a veritable counter-revolution in intellectual life has seen the period of the "master-thinkers" of the 1960s succeeded by an era of generalized mediocrity. Where Althusser or Lacan, Foucault or Derrida once held centre stage, today restorationist currents prevail in academia and on television sets. Fuelled by a complaisant media, contemporary French ideology seeks neither to interpret nor to change the world, but is instead content to legitimize a globally hegemonic neo-liberalism.
Dominique Lecourt was a pupil of Louis Althusser and Jacques Derrida at the Ecole normale superieure in the 1960s. Now Professor of Philosophy at the University of Paris VII, his publications in English include Marxism and Epistemology and Proletarian Science?