File spoon-archives/foucault.archive/foucault_1998/foucault.9806, message 21

Date: Thu, 4 Jun 1998 12:02:35 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Re: The power of one

On Fri, 22 May 1998, na.devine wrote:

> I think the difficulty is in the term 'l'on' which is translated here as 
> 'one' but could be translated as a kind of vague 'they' or as a passive 
> voice.  at any rate it isn't a case of one definable person having 
> control over others,  but more perhaps a kind of theoretical apparatus - 
> as described in 'on governmentality'.

I think that's probably right.  But then in "Politics and Reason",
Foucault writes:  "The characteristic feature of power is that some men
can more or less entirely determine other men's conduct."  Maybe a slip of
the pen (hard to see how that could be, though; this is a prepared text,
not an interview, and the quoted remark is in the context of a definition
of power); maybe evidence of an oscillation between different definitions
of power.

----Matthew A. King------Department of Philosophy------McMaster University----
     "The border is often narrow between a permanent temptation to commit
     suicide and the birth of a certain form of political consciousness."
-----------------------------(Michel Foucault)--------------------------------


Driftline Main Page


Display software: ArchTracker © Malgosia Askanas, 2000-2005