[Foucault-L] Ph.d. course on Foucault, Governmentality, Biopolitics. 11-13 Dec., Copenhagen

Dear Foucault-list,
Please see this call for the Ph.d. Course:

Foucault, Governmentality,
Biopolitics – Analytical strategies for critique of power (Ph.d. course, 11-13
December 2013): http://www.cbs.dk/en/node/258118
·  Jeffrey
Bussolini, Associate Professor, Staten Island, City University of New York,
·  Mitchell
Dean, Professor of Public Governance, CBS/University of Newcastle,
·  Thomas
Dumm, Professor, Department of Political Science, Amherst College, USA.
·  Marius
Gudmand-Høyer, Post.Doc, Dept. of Management, Politics & Philosophy, CBS,
·  Kaspar
Villadsen, Associate Professor, Dept. of Management, Politics &
Philosophy, CBS, Denmark.
Place: Department of
Management, Politics & Philosophy, CBS, Copenhagen
Course Coordinators
Villadsen & Mitchell Dean
Prerequisite/progression of the course
PhD students can participate in the course.
It is a precondition for receiving the course diploma
that the PhD student attends the whole course.
Aim of the course
course will provide the participants with:
An updated introduction to key analytical concepts in the Governmentality
literature, and the potentials and weaknesses of these concepts will be
Possibilities for supplementing the governmentality approach with other
analytical sources will be discussed.
Furthermore, a detailed consideration of the current status of governmentality
studies and post-Foucauldian studies will be given, in particular in light of
recent claims for a crisis of critique.
Finally, suggestions will be presented on how to elaborate or move beyond the
framework of governmentality by activating concepts of bio-power and
sovereignty, reconsidering the social and notions of society, and focusing on
international dimensions of governmentality.
brief, the course aims to provide participants with a thorough understanding of
the governmentality framework, that is, its analytical possibilities, its
current status, and its possible directions of development.
Course content, structure and teaching
the last 20 years, post-Foucauldian “governmentality studies” have come to
growing prominence. These studies have been effective in critically analyzing
new types of liberal government, in particular by demonstrating ‘the active
side of laissez faire’. They describe how the motto of ‘pulling back the state’
has been accompanied by a series of governmental strategies and technologies
aimed at shaping institutions and subjects in particular ways. Perhaps most noticeably,
they have presented a diagnosis of a proliferation of regimes of enterprise and
accounting in new and surprising places. But a wide range of other domains have
been subjected to governmentality analysis spanning from genetic screening and
risk calculation, new crime prevention strategies, to health promotion by
self-responsibilization. To be sure, the concepts in governmentality studies
continue to constitute effective tools for critical social analysis.
in recent years critical objections have been raised against the
governmentality approach. It has been noted by some observers that the
Foucauldian and post-structuralist language, originally used for critical
academic purposes, seems to be increasingly appropriated by ‘the powers’ that
were the object of such critique. Most notably, this point has been voiced
(although in different versions) by Zizek, Boltanski, and Hardt & Negri.
These thinkers suggest that a post-structural ’politics of difference’
increasingly seems to be an integral part of the ways, in which institutions
and companies organize themselves. If modern liberal government has begun to
speak for the dissolution of binary essentials, the destabilization of rigid
power structures, the creation of space for the subject’s self-transforming
work upon itself, and so on. In light of this development, we need to think of
ways to revitalize the Foucauldian concepts of critique/criticism or to push a
critical perspective beyond Foucault.
central theme of the PhD course is the search for effective analytical
strategies for critique of power (some perhaps less noticed) in the works of
Foucault and other writers within and outside the governmentality tradition. Of
particular interest is Giorgio Agamben’s recent critique and extension of
Foucault’s genealogy of government.
course requires the submission of a paper that deals with conceptual problems
or analytical designs in relation to Foucauldian inspired/governmentality
studies. Furthermore, papers that apply Foucauldian concepts to empirical
problems in a variety of domains are welcomed.
is also possible to participate on the basis of an abstract stating the theme
of the PhD project. An abstract should be approximately 1 page, whereas a paper
should be approx. 5 pages. In both cases, the PhD student should state his main
analytical challenge/concern at his/her current stage in the project.
must be in English. DEADLINE is 2 December 2013.
Lecture plan
Time/period    Faculty    Title   
Wednesday 11th
10:00-12:30     Kaspar Villadsen    Analytical approaches in governmentality studies    
12:30-13:30     Lunch       
13:30-16:00     Mitchell Dean     Concepts of power:
‘The signature of power’‘
16:00-17:00    Kaspar Villadsen & Mitchell Dean    Papers from Ph.D. scholars
Thursday 12th December.            
10.00-12.30    Thomas Dumm  Foucault, Neo-liberalism and Freedom.
12:30-13:30     Lunch       
13.30-15.00    Kaspar Villadsen    Technologies and organisations in Foucault’s thinking
15.00-17.00    Kaspar Villadsen, Thomas Dumm & Mitchell Dean    Papers from Ph.D. scholars   
Friday 13thDecember            
10:00-11:30     Jeffrey Bussolini    Biopolitics: Foucault meets Agamben
11:00-12:30     Mitchell Dean  
Governmentality meets theology 
12.30-13.30    Lunch       
13:30-15:00     Marius Gudmand-Høyer     Dispositive analysis: the key concept in Foucault?   
15.00-16.00    Kaspar Villadsen, Jeffrey Bussolini & Mitchell Dean     
Papers from Ph.D. scholars   
16:00-17:00    Kaspar Villadsen & Mitchell Dean     
Concluding discussion and evaluation   
Teaching methods
course will use lectures given by specialists in the field, roundtable
discussions, and presentation of papers from PhD students. Participation in the
course requires a paper with an outline of PhD project or parts of the project.
See more details above.
Course literature
Agamben, G. (2011) The Kingdom and the Glory: a
Theological Genealogy of Economy and Government. Stanford University Press,
especially pages 109-114; Appendix.
Bussolini, J. (2010) ‘Critical encounter between Giorgio Agamben
and Michel Foucault: Review of recent works by Giorgio Agamben’, Foucault Studies 10: 108-143.
Dean, M. (2012) ‘Governmentality meets theology: the king reigns
but does not govern’, Theory, Culture and Society 29 (3):
Dean, M. (2012) ‘The signature of power’, Journal of
Political Power 5 (1): 101-117.
Foucault, M. (2007) Security, Territory, Population.
New York: Palgrave Macmillan (especially lecture 5)
Foucault, M. (2008) The Birth of Biopolitics. New
York: Palgrave Macmillan (especially lecture 12).
Villadsen, K. & Karlsen, M.P. (2008) "Who Should Do the
Talking? The proliferation of dialogue as governmental technology",
in: Culture & Organization, no. 14, vol. 4.
 Villadsen, K. (2008) "Doing without the State and
Civil Society as Universals: 'Dispositifs' of care across the classic sector divide",
in: Journal of Civil Society, no. 4, vol. 3.
ECTS awarded
Maximum and Minimum number of
Min: 19
DKK 3,900 (covers the course, coffee, tea, lunch and
one dinner)
Enrol no later than
1 November 2013
Contact: See Link: http://www.cbs.dk/en/node/258118
  • Re: [Foucault-L] Ph.d. course on Foucault, Governmentality, Biopolitics. 11-13 Dec., Copenhagen
    • From: Michael Blix
  • Partial thread listing: