Power/Knowledge: Selected Interviews and Other Writings, 1972-1977 by Michel FoucaultLibrarian note: an alternate cover for this edition can be found here.
Michel Foucault has become famous for a series of books that have permanently altered our understanding of many institutions of Western society. He analyzed mental institutions in the remarkable Madness and Civilization; hospitals in The Birth of the Clinic; prisons in Discipline and Punish; and schools and families in The History of Sexuality. But the general reader as well as the specialist is apt to miss the consistent purposes that lay behind these difficult individual studies, thus losing sight of the broad social vision and political aims that unified them.
Now, in this superb set of essays and interviews, Foucault has provided a much-needed guide to Foucault. These pieces, ranging over the entire spectrum of his concerns, enabled Foucault, in his most intimate and accessible voice, to interpret the conclusions of his research in each area and to demonstrate the contribution of each to the magnificent - and terrifying - portrait of society that he was patiently compiling.
For, as Foucault shows, what he was always describing was the nature of power in society; not the conventional treatment of power that concentrates on powerful individuals and repressive institutions, but the much more pervasive and insidious mechanisms by which power reaches into the very grain of individuals, touches their bodies and inserts itself into their actions and attitudes, their discourses, learning processes and everyday lives.
Foucaults investigations of prisons, schools, barracks, hospitals, factories, cities, lodgings, families, and other organized forms of social life are each a segment of one of the most astonishing intellectual enterprises of all time - and, as this book proves, one which possesses profound implications for understanding the social control of our bodies and our minds.
Power for Foucault is what makes us what we are, operating on a quite different level from other theories:. And it induces regular effects of power. Foucault is one of the few writers on power who recognise that power is not just a negative, coercive or repressive thing that forces us to do things against our wishes, but can also be a necessary, productive and positive force in society Gaventa 2 :. In fact power produces; it produces reality; it produces domains of objects and rituals of truth. Power is also a major source of social discipline and conformity. Their systems of surveillance and assessment no longer required force or violence, as people learned to discipline themselves and behave in expected ways.
Over 30 years of anarchist writing from Ireland listed under hundreds of topics. Pro-Choice articles WSM abortion rights policy. Articles on Feminism Towards Womens Freedom. Michel Foucault is a philosopher whose politics everybody seems to have a differing opinion on. He has been called a disguised Marxist, both a secret and explicit anti-Marxist, a nihilist, a new conservative, a new liberal, a neutral interpretivist, a crypto-normativist, a principled anarchist as well as a dangerous left-wing one, and even a Gaullist technocrat. Download the PDF file of this issue. Like what you're reading?
Indeed, for Foucault the balance of power is combined always in the plural. One could even say with Foucault that power is always connected with another, which leads her to have no other object or any other matter that the force itself. First, Foucault examines the power in terms of minor processes that identify and invest the body. Four investment by the power of the body are described in Discipline and Punish: the first investment as a piece of space as the second core behaviors third time as Internal, and last as a sum of forces. Against all odds, it is no longer, as one would a little too hastily, to study the question of power in terms of great questions about the genesis of the State or the rights of nature.
Michel Foucault: key concepts This page offers brief definitions of some of the and knowledge structures, which enhance and maintain the exercise of power.
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How Foucault Matters Today
The relationship between power and knowledge has been always a central theme in the social sciences., Michel Foucault — was born in Poiters, France.
Foucault generally uses this term to indicate the various institutional, physical and administrative mechanisms and knowledge structures, which enhance and maintain the exercise of power within the social body. In other words archaeology is about looking at history as a way of understanding the processes that have led to what we are today. The tools Foucault uses to practice both methods are to all intents and purposes the same. But, if archaeology addresses a level at which differences and similarities are determined, a level where things are simply organized to produce manageable forms of knowledge, the stakes are much higher for genealogy. Genealogy deals with precisely the same substrata of knowledge and culture, but Foucault now describes it as a level where the grounds of the true and the false come to be distinguished via mechanisms of power. It designates the collection of all material traces left behind by a particular historical period and culture. None of these concepts has predictive value — they are all descriptions of limited historical orders.