Re: Governmentality/State Theory

Hullo all,

With regard to Chad's post: that is a most important point, that the
vital issue around Machievelli is the distancing of the art of govt from
the intrinsic nature of the Prince. I wonder if Foucault had read *the
King's Two Bodies* by Ernst Kantorowicz 1957, a classic account of the
development of the distinction between the notion of the corporeal
sovereign and the eternal idea of the sovereign - the formation of the
political abstraction. But Kantorowicz puts the moment much further back
in time than The Prince.

Which raises another point: to what extent does it matter if Foucault
gets the history wrong? It doesn't alter the point which is the
imbrication of sovereignty, the art of government, and disciplines. At
least I don't think it does: I stand to be corrected on this. (Because
if genealogy is an important mode of critique there is a presumption of
the significance even *truth* of its accuracy).

But I do think that by relying on Machievelli for his early account of
soveriegnty he misses what is still - for some of us who still live in
monarchies - a significant component: derived from theocratic theories
of sovereignty, the obligations of monarchs to their subjects - drawn
from the association of the Crown and Christ ( remember the Invisible
Hand? its Christ's hand, guiding the monarch and protecting him). Or is
it the case that it is precisely this that Machievelli is arguing
against or in reaction to? I haven't read THE PRINCE, perhaps you could
comment on this, Chad.

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