RE: Drug Gaze

Lionel wrote

>The intensity of this rebuke is the same as I recieve when I confront
someone who is involved in Landmark Forum / EST. Drug cult / drug gaze ..
it is all a dangerous thing that is counter productive to normal society.

A rather quick response, with no textual evidence I'm afraid.

Not only is 'normal' society extremely problematic - read just about any
work of Foucault's, but perhaps especially Les Anormaux, forthcoming in
English translation - but 'dangerous' is a very loaded term too. Why is it
dangerous? To whom? And to suggest that it is 'counter productive' is also
very interesting, and revealing. What is meant or implied by 'productive'
here? It could surely be argued that the war against drugs is at least in
part in order to produce a society that is productive, and not limited in
its capacity to work by drug use. Wouldn't Foucault rather have seen this as
another means by which power operates into the individual's life, as it does
in a range of other ways.

I sense that there is quite a serious misuse of the notion of 'gaze' here,
and that it is being used for a very un-Foucauldian analysis. Foucault's
attitude to drugs, both on a personal level, and in the comments that he
makes about them (as I recall) would seem to indicate that he saw drug
experimentation as a means of resistance to the normalising tendencies of
the productive society. This is not to say that the way in which organized
crime operates in the drug trade in not a mechanism of power, of course not,
but I think that a more critical analysis is needed here.


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