Foucault News

News and resources on French thinker Michel Foucault (1926-1984)

Ten Weeks on Foucault Course: Powerful Ideas and Practical Applications

Course by Kerry Sanders
6 Aug 2013 – 8 Oct 2013

University of Sydney, Centre for Continuing Education.
Training and development courses open to anyone

Introduction
It will be argued that Foucault gives an analysis of political power and its institutions, which are crucial to understanding the world we now live in. Foucault shows that control over knowledge, that is what we know or believe, makes us what we are. One of the most important mechanisms of making modern individuals is the process of ‘normalisation’ in which divisions are established between groups such as ‘sane and insane’; criminal and law abiding; diseased and healthy. We will then apply ideas such as: ‘bio-power’; ‘technologies of the self’; ‘surveillance’ to some contemporary situations and see if Foucault’s ideas illuminate our social understanding.

Course Content

  • Introduction to Foucault: The construction of the subject through power and knowledge
  • Bio-Power: How do political and cultural institutions use the human body, with its capacities and limitations, to its own ends?
  • Discipline and Punish
  • Those who have the power to say what constitutes the truth, have the power to construct subjecthood.
  • The History of Sexuality, Vol. l
  • Technologies of Self Construction: These are the self-chosen practices of the subject, in which self-discipline and self-analysis seem to be freely chosen.
  • “The Subject and Power”
  • Technologies of the Self. What is Foucault’s (limited) ‘solution’ to the problems of oppressive power?
  • Technologies of Space. The body is actively produced with its constraints and capacities through the spaces in which it operates. E.g. The shifts in workplace architecture in the different stages of industrialism, produces different kinds of workers: agricultural workers developed different body capacities than someone confined to the space of an assembly line, where the body is maximised to do repetitive tasked for long periods.
  • Apply ideas such as: ‘bio-power’; ‘technologies of the self’; ‘surveillance’ to some contemporary situations and see if Foucault’s ideas illuminate our social understanding.

One thought on “Ten Weeks on Foucault Course: Powerful Ideas and Practical Applications

  1. Mark says:

    As someone who lives in Sydney, I’m very curious to know who is proposing to teach this – I find it a little extraordinary that it’s being advertised without a named teacher attached, though this may be an oversight of course.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: