I have been quietly absorbing, up till now, the points that everyone has
been posting. I have yet to read John's essay/article on Foucault
(Psychotherapy and Surveillance). At the moment I am in a small battle
with Foucault and perhaps someone could come to my assistance. My reading
of Foucault is, at this point, very limited. What I have read, however,
has not remained very prominent in my mind.

My question concerns power. Foucault makes the argument that power is
productive. How so? I can see the implications of his statement. But
within his theories, the notion of power being destructive is something
that does not seem to be a point of contention. He looks at the objective
and focuses on discourse and structure. Yet, I question how salient his
theories are if he is focusing on understanding the historical
construction of society , thereby being interesting in people, but
neglecting the subjective element. Perhaps my queries are without
warrant. If so, I trust that someone will kindly point out where I have
strayed and where I am on track.


Clara Ho
The University of Calgary

  • Re: power
    • From: Mark Rifkin
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