Foucault News

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

Janaína Quinzen Willrich, Luciane Prado Kantorski, Ariane da Cruz Guedes, Carmen Terezinha Leal Argiles, Marta Solange Streicher, Janelli da Silva, Dariane Lima Portela,
The (mis)government in the COVID-19 pandemic and the psychosocial implications: discipline, subjection, and subjectivity
(2022) Revista da Escola de Enfermagem da USP.

DOI: 10.1590/1980-220X-REEUSP-2021-0550

OBJECTIVE: to analyze the psychosocial implications arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, reported in online service, from the perspective of Michel Foucault’s concepts of biopower, biopolitics and governmentality.

METHOD: qualitative documental research, with analysis of medical records of users assisted in a therapeutic listening chat, between April and October 2020.

RESULTS: the data were organized into two themes: Governmentality in the COVID-19 pandemic and the production of psychosocial implications of anxiety and fear and Discipline and subjection in the COVID-19 pandemic: subjectivities marked by sadness and anguish. The first demonstrates that the “art of governing” in Brazil produced instabilities and uncertainties that influenced the production of fear of contamination/death/and non-access to treatment and anxiety. In the second theme, we can see how disciplinary control and biopolitical regulation are combined. In Brazil, an extremely unequal country, subjectivity and subjectivities marked by anguish, feelings of discouragement and sadness have been produced.

CONCLUSION: the exclusionary processes were deepened in the pandemic, with the exercise of a biopolitics that makes life precarious and produces psychological distress.

Index Keywords
anxiety, emotion, government, human, pandemic; Anxiety, COVID-19, Emotions, Government, Humans, Pandemics

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