Foucault News

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

Erlenbusch, V. The place of sovereignty: Mapping power with Agamben, Butler, and Foucault (2013) Critical Horizons, 14 (1), pp. 44-69.

Further info

This article addresses the relationship between sovereignty, biopolitics and governmentality in the work of Giorgio Agamben, Judith Butler, and Michel Foucault. By unpacking Foucault’s genealogy of modern governmentality, it responds to a criticism leveled against Foucauldian accounts of power for their alleged abandonment of the traditional model of power in juridico-institutional terms in favor of an understanding of power as purely productive. This claim has most significantly been developed by Agamben in “Homo Sacer: Sovereign Power and Bare Life”. I argue that Judith Butler’s analysis of power, in particular in her essay “Indefinite Detention”, presents a more differentiated account of power that registers the significance of practices of sovereignty and resonates with Foucault’s lectures on “Security, Territory, Population”. © W. S. Maney & Son Ltd 2013.

Author Keywords
Agamben; Biopolitics; Butler; Foucault; Governmentality; Sovereignty

DOI: 10.1179/15685160X13A.0000000003

One thought on “The place of sovereignty: Mapping power with Agamben, Butler, and Foucault (2013)

  1. stuartelden says:

    Reblogged this on Progressive Geographies and commented:
    Very interesting piece on the relations between Agamben, Butler and Foucault on the question of place, sovereignty and power. The defence of Foucault against Agamben is particularly useful.

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