Governmentalism And Neoliberalism

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As the last one, neoliberalism could be seen in governmentality approaches. The concept of ‘governmentality’ is a term used by Michel Foucault (1991) in his work on modern forms of political power. It is a term that combines ‘government’ and ‘rationality’, suggesting a form of political analysis that focuses on the forms of knowledge that make objects visible and available for governing. In Foucault’s terms, governmentality refers to a distinctive modality for exercising power, one which is not reducible to ‘the state’ This interpretation of neoliberalism centers on acknowledging a processual character where neoliberalism’s articulation with existing circumstances comes through endlessly unfolding failures and successes in the relations between…show more content…
Deleuze (1992) has described this shift as a transition from disciplinary societies to ‘societies of control’. Irrespective of the specific form of government that has emerged observers of neoliberalism and theorists of governmentality have however tended to overlook a critical feature of contemporary state practice. This characteristic is the retention by the state of a very strong, indeed dominant, capacity to determine not only the mode of government that is to be deployed but the discursive basis for that deployment. Indeed the state remains the primary site for the articulation of governmental discourse, irrespective of its other activities. The production, articulation and implementation of housing policy, for example, continues to be the domain of the state, irrespective of whether the policy specifies a social or a market mode of action. This ideological or discursive capacity is implicitly recognised in most neoMarxist theorisations of the ‘role of the state’ under capitalism, such as that of Poulantzas (1973) or Jessop (1982) including the function of ‘state apparatuses’ (Althusser…show more content…
The changes to social housing programs that have occurred since the 1970s must be placed in a broader social and economic context. Prominent among social and economic shifts since the 1970s has been neoliberalism. Neoliberalism (or neo-classical economics, the ‘new right’, economic rationalism) encompasses a suite of philosophical and economic theories that have become prominent in public discourse since the late 1960s (Hayek 1948; Nozick 1974), and which derive much of their intellectual inspiration from the earlier interest among late-nineteenth century classical economists and liberal economists (Smith 1970; Mill 1972) with the beneficial operation of markets. Neoliberal thought typically holds as its most basic tenet that the most efficient means for achieving an efficient distribution of social goods and services is through the operation of markets. This belief in the allocative superiority of markets is accompanied by a sceptical assessment of government’s abilities to achieve social or collective goals (Bourdieu 1998), such that governments should refrain from providing public infrastructure and services (Graham and Marvin 2001), in favour of private agencies (Friedman and Friedman 1981). 2 Self (2000) describes three related elements of neoliberal discourse. Economically, markets are perceived as the most rational means of resource allocation; socially, markets are conceived as constituting a foundational set of individual

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