Michel Foucault Discipline And Punish Analysis

1356 Words6 Pages
Michel Foucault, Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison Wanchen Xie Introduction on the author Michel Foucault was born on October 15, 1926 in Poitiers, France. He wrote a great many works which influenced the philosophy and sociology deeply, for instance, Madness and Civilization. Not only was Foucault an intellectual and philosopher, but he was a political activist as well. He got involved in various protests and campaigns, say, against the war in Algeria, against social issues, as well as prison reform. He got involved in the prison reform in France and visited prisons in America as well. Thus it reflects that his notion was more than purely theoretical with various experiences and provided us a lot social facts to evaluate. Introduction…show more content…
He believed in the whole modern society, diffuse power has been immersed in all aspects of life. It can be captured in the small places. This diffuse power is not necessarily rely on the unified state machine, but in various specific areas. In the 17th and 18th centuries, the mechanisms of discipline gradually extended throughout the entire society. As we can see, modern factories, schools, military barracks, hospitals and prisons are to some extent similar to each other; this is what Foucault calls “the advent of disciplinary society”. Moreover, power is a relationship and network. Traditional theory of power supposed power is an ability or resource which can be competed, transferred. Foucault claims that it is a relationship, this power can be seen in the flow of the process cycle, especially hierarchical observation mentioned in the book. Power is produced in the relation network. Additionally, power is anonymous without main body. Everyone is a point in the power relationship; they can be both executor and monitored…show more content…
Maybe this carceral society cannot be supposed as a general theory of western civilization. Additionally, Foucault thinks it is Enlightenment helped to change to disciplinarian style of Ancient Regime. In reality, according to the query of some scholars, in the aftermath of the defeat of Napoleon, there was a very powerful conservative backlash against liberalism and Enlightenment in Europe, which persisted in some countries well into 19th century, but not the “discipline and punish” model of society that Foucault imagined. Lastly, there are some errors in Foucault’s claiming of the changing timing in the Western penal system. It shows that the number of crimes punished by the death penalty increased to the early 19th century not fell as well as corporal punishment was still often used in 19th
Open Document