Foucault News

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

SAM BINKLEY

ABSTRACT This article theorizes the biopolitical production of embodiment through a consideration of biopolitical metaphor.  It is argued that much recent theoretical work on biopower fails to provide an adequate account of embodiment, and particularly on the question of the habitualization of bodily experience.  However, read through the lens of biopolitical metaphor, and drawing on the works of George Lakoff and a Mark Johnson, a dynamic account of the biopolitical shaping of bodily memory and embodied habit becomes possible.  Moreover, it is argued that a theory of biopolitical metaphor provides provocative openings for thinking together the recent discursively oriented work on biopower and other approaches associated with the affective turn, specifically around the problems of mimesis and supplement.  New research directions are proposed, centered on common experiences of biopolitical domination among marginalized groups drawn from shared experiences of habit and embodiment.

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