Presentation on theme: "Power & Discipline in the Postmodern World By Katie Greenberg."— Presentation transcript:
Power & Discipline in the Postmodern World By Katie Greenberg
The Importance of Bodies Our bodies create our wants, needs, deficiencies ect They drive our existence and create our history Focoult contends that the body involved in the political field which is marked by a reciprocal relationship with power He states: “The body becomes a useful force only if it is both a productive body and a subjected body” Locke’s Social Contract: People put others in charge to guarantee their basic needs like safety. in return they are supposed to be valuable citizens by working, farming, ect (something which must sometimes be enforced by the state)
The Plague Foucalt marks the plague of the 17 th century as the beginnings of an aim towards creating a disciplinary community The town is closed and divided into strict quarters governed by an intendant Guards are put in place to ensure order and to separate lepers and other contagious people from society People are forced to stay in their homes whereas each street is supervised by a syndic who conducts regular inspections These syndics go from house to house on a daily basis where he calls out each individual’s name to appear at a window to make sure that no dead or sick people are being concealed These people are described as having complete control over civilians
“This enclosed segmented space, observed at every point, in which the individuals are inserted in a fixed place, in which the slightest movements are supervised, in which all events are recorded, in which an uninterrupted work of writing links the center and periphery, in which power is exercised without division, according to a continuous hierarchical figure, in which each individual is constantly located, examined, and distributed among the living beings, the sick, and the dead- all this constitutes a compact model of the disciplinary mechanism.”
V for Vendetta This type of order is a political ruler’s dream It creates a pure community and a disciplined society where ensures power over men V for Vendetta illustrates how one ruler even induces an epidemic to attain this form of control
Discussion Question: In terms of the abnormal... Foucault neatly divides 17 th century societies into binaries (living/dead, healthy/sick) However we’ve been dealing with virtual/posthuman bodies in terms of a slope (think uncanny valley) So what effects does this type of branding have on a society where it is becoming increasingly difficult to differentiate between the “normal” and the “abnormal”? Or what about a post modern society where there potentially is already a pure community of sorts (no longer affected by diseases or genetic deficiencies) – Can the same type of discipline/hierarchical structure exist?
The Panopticon Jeremy Bentham’s Panopticon refers to an annular building where the periphery is lined with individual cells. A tower with blinded windows is placed In the center so that a single guard can watch over the cells while remaining unseen by the inhabitants. Foucault describes this visibility as a trap. Whereas the feeling that one is always being watched allows for more effective and efficient control over others
This type of discipline serves a newfound purpose Before discipline just being used to alleviate problems and dangers now its being used as an instrument to increase obedience and utility within a system Shown through schools, factories ect. What ways have we increased surveillance in our society and how have they impacted behavior?
How Does This Play Out in Postmodern Societies X-Men deals with this problem and society’s proposed solution is to register all mutants Other solution- Xavier has Cerebro which allows him to keep track of all mutants Cerebro=Panopticon – I’m blowing your mind here
Do/Could these types of disciplinary methods work in such an evolved society?Despite the fact that Xavier has Cerebro there’s still major issues with mutant discipline (How else can one explain the need for a 2 nd and 3 rd movie) Also, when a society’s basic needs can longer be manipulated by the elite (no longer held back by disease, need for safety, ect) what does this do to the social hierarchy in regards to Locke’s Social Contract?