What does Focault mean by “space”?

What is Foucault’s concept?

Foucault challenges the idea that power is wielded by people or groups by way of ‘episodic’ or ‘sovereign’ acts of domination or coercion, seeing it instead as dispersed and pervasive. ‘Power is everywhere’ and ‘comes from everywhere’ so in this sense is neither an agency nor a structure (Foucault 1998: 63).

When did Foucault write of other spaces?


Of Other Space
The test entitled “Of Other Spaces” was the basis of a lecture given by Michel Foucault to a group of architectural students in 1967. Although it is not part of his official corpus of work, the manuscript was released into the public domain in 1984 for an exhibition in Berlin, shortly before his death.

What were Foucault’s main ideas?

Foucault’s entire philosophy is based on the assumption that human knowledge and existence are profoundly historical. He argues that what is most human about man is his history. He discusses the notions of history, change and historical method at some length at various points in his career.

What are the two main types of power according to Foucault?

As modes of power in democracies, Foucault explicitly identified:

  • Sovereign power.
  • Disciplinary power.
  • Pastoral power.
  • Bio-power.

What was Foucault’s best known for?

Michel Foucault began to attract wide notice as one of the most original and controversial thinkers of his day with the appearance of The Order of Things in 1966. His best-known works included Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (1975) and The History of Sexuality, a multivolume history of Western sexuality.

What is Foucault’s theory of discourse?

Discourse, as defined by Foucault, refers to: ways of constituting knowledge, together with the social practices, forms of subjectivity and power relations which inhere in such knowledges and relations between them. Discourses are more than ways of thinking and producing meaning.

What idea did Foucault reject?

Foucault found fault with them as well, but he decisively rejected the positivist tenet that the methods of the pure or natural sciences provided an exclusive standard for arriving at genuine or legitimate knowledge.

Did Foucault believe in science?

As a structuralist, Foucault believes the key to understanding the status of scientific knowledge is to understand the conceptual structures that lie at its foundations.

What was Foucault’s philosophy?

Foucault was interested in power and social change. In particular, he studied how these played out as France shifted from a monarchy to democracy via the French revolution. He believed that we have tended to oversimplify this transition by viewing it as an ongoing and inevitable attainment of “freedom” and “reason”.

What is Foucault’s view on human nature?

According to him, our conceptions of human nature are acquired from our own society, civilization and culture. He gave, as an example of this, late 19th and early 20th century Marxism which, according to Foucault, borrowed its conception of happiness from bourgeois society.

Is Foucault easy to read?

Michel Foucault’s Discipline and Punish is one of the best-selling works of critical theory and a key text on many undergraduate courses. However, it is a long, difficult text which makes Anne Schwan and Stephen Shapiro’s excellent step-by-step reading guide a welcome addition to the How to Read Theory series.

What is Foucault’s theory called?

Theory of power

The empirical analyses concern themselves with historical (and modern) forms of power and how these emerged from previous forms of power. Foucault describes three types of power in his empirical analyses: sovereign power, disciplinary power, and biopower.

What is Foucault’s theory of disciplinary power?

DISCIPLINARY POWER & CONSUMER RESEARCH. According to Foucault disciplinary power characterises the way in which the relations of inequality and oppression in modern western societies are (re)produced through the psychological complex.

What theorist is Foucault?

Michel Foucault (1926–1984) was a French historian and philosopher, associated with the structuralist and post-structuralist movements. He has had strong influence not only (or even primarily) in philosophy but also in a wide range of humanistic and social scientific disciplines.

Was Foucault a nihilist?

It also briefly explains the positions of two other nihilist thinkers, Friedrich Nietzsche and Michel Foucault, in order to establish the thought which Strauss seems to be arguing against in his works. It then explains the writing style of Strauss as being esoteric.

Is Foucault a Marxist?

1. Foucault’s Early Marxism. Foucault began his career as a Marxist, having been influenced by his mentor, the Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser, as a student to join the French Communist Party.

How do Marx and Foucault differ?

While Marx refers to economic processes in capitalism as the sole technology of power, Foucault identifies at least two political technologies of power, which he refers to as disciplinary power and bio-power.

Did Foucault agree with Marx?

Although he was often critical of Marxism, Foucault’s own approach bears striking parallels to Marxism, as a form of method, as an account of history, and as an analysis of social structure.

Why does Foucault think that power can be exercised only over free subjects?

Foucault argues that power can be exercised only over free subjects. By freedom, Foucault means the possibility of reacting and behaving in different ways. If these 17 Page 12 possibilities are closed down through violence or slavery, then it is no longer a question of a relationship of power.

What does Foucault mean by power is productive?

For Foucault, power is productive as well as repressive. Power does not just come from those in authority: it manifests itself in many different ways and from many different points at once. Power directs the transmission of knowledge and discourses and shapes our concepts and self-image.

Is Foucault relevant today?

Today he remains one of the most influential and widely read social theorists in recent history. Foucault’s work has been groundbreaking not only for sociology, but also for anthropology, cultural studies, psychology, gender studies, gay and lesbian studies, philosophy, and literary criticism.