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JB Body and Foucualt

JB Body and Foucualt

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Published by Jacque Che

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Published by: Jacque Che on Jun 25, 2012
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06/26/2012

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FEMINISMANDTHEFINALFOUCAULT
EditedbyDiannaTaylorandKarenVintges
UniversityofIllinoisPressUrbanaandChicago
 
©
2004bytheBoardofTrusteesoftheUniversityofIllinoisAllrightsreservedManufacturedintheUnitedStatesofAmerica12345cP54321
S
Thisbookisprintedonacid-freepaper.LibraryofCongressCataloging-in-PublicationDataFeminismandtheFinalFoucault/editedbyDiannaTaylorandKarenVintges.
p.
ern,
Includesbibliographicalreferencesandindex.
ISBN
0-252-02927-5(alk.paper)
ISBN
0-252-07182-4(pbk.:alk.paper)
1.
Feministtheory.2.Foucault,Michel-Contributionsinfeministtheory.3.Feministethics.4.Self.5.Power(Socialsciences)6.Postmodernism-Socialaspects.
1.
Taylor,Dianna.II.Vintges,Karen.HQ1l90.F4q62004305-42'Ol-dc222003023675
 
BodiesandPowerRevisited
JudithButler
Foucault'searlyapproachtothequestionofbodiesandpowerisperhapsbestknowninhisanalysisofthebodyoftheprisonerin
DisciplineandPun-ish.
Manyofushavereadandrereadthisanalysisandtriedtounderstandhowpoweractsuponabody,butalsohowpowercomestocraftandformabody.Thedistinctionbetweenthetwoisvexing,sinceitseemsthattotheextentthatpoweractsonabody,thebodyisanteriortopower;andtotheextentthatpowerformsabody,thebodyisinsomeways,ortosomeex-tent,madebypower.OnecanfinditclearlyinFoucault'sowndescription.In
DisciplineandPunish,
hewrites,forinstance,that"systemsofpunish-mentaretobesituatedinacertain'politicaleconomy'ofthebody"
(1979,25).
Andwhenheattemptstosituatethewaythebodyis"directlyinvolvedinapoliticalfield,"hedescribestheprocessthisway:"Powerrelationshaveanimmediateholduponit;theyinvestit,markit,trainit,tortureit,forceittocarryouttasks,toperformceremonies,toemitsigns"
(1979,25).1
Herethebodyisdescribednotmerelyinitsdocility,butinitsvulnerabilitytoco-ercion.Itis"forced"todocertainthings,anditdoestheminaccordwiththedemandsmadeuponit.Theforcethatcompelstheactiondoesnotre-mainanteriortotheactionitself.Theactionitselfbecomesforceful,andinwaysthatarenotalwaysinaccordwiththeoriginalaimsofcoercivepower."Thebody,"Foucaultwrites,"becomesausefulforceonlyifitisbothapro-ductivebodyandasubjectedbody"["s'ilest
a
lafoiscorpsproductifetcorpsassujetti"]
(1979,26;31,
French).Thepowerimposeduponabodyistobeunderstoodaspartofthe"politicaltechnologyofthebody,"atechnologythatoperatesthrougha"micro-physics"exercisedintheformofa"strat-egy"
(1979,26;31,
French).Astrategyisnottobeunderstoodasaunilateralimpositionofpower,butpreciselyanoperationofpowerthatisatoncepro-ductive,diffuse,variousinitsforms.Inrelationtothis"strategy,"which,hemakesclear,isnot"appropriated"byananteriorsubject,onemustdiscern"anetworkofrelations,constantlyintension,inactivity,ratherthanapriv-ilegethatonemightpossess"
(1979,26).

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