Panopticism Quick Overview

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Foucault stage of presentation focuses on the strict and powerful structure of society. This includes heavy surveillance, strict discipline, as well as routine such as role call. All of these things are a part of the quarantine process due to a plague. The point of the stages of presentation is to attempt to create an understanding in regards to power and knowledge, as well as how they can relate to one another. It could be said that Foucault’s argument is regarding similarities in our society compared to panopticism. In both our society and in panopticism, the need for control amongst individuals strongly mirrors how inmates under lock and key are constantly being monitored, minus the quarantine being involved with panopticism. One main point that can be gathered from Foucault’s argument is that there is hardly a need for such strictness and definitely not a need for visible authoritarians at every turn. With laws, rules, and regulations in place, it is clear that fear of consequence prevents said laws, rules, and regulations from being broken by many. It is clear that the fear of being disciplined is a key movement in Foucault’s argument. He expressed how discipline, in regards to panopticism, sometimes undermines and even infiltrates others (Foucault, 300). This supports the fact that fear of being disciplined is indeed a powerful tool that is often used and abused.

One particular sentence stuck out that described a key moment very good. Foucault stated that “ ‘Discipline’ may be identified neither with an institution nor with an apparatus; it is a type of power, a modality for its exercise, compromising a whole set of instruments, techniques, procedures, levels of application, targets; it is a ‘physics’ or an ‘anatomy’ of power, a technology (Foucault 300). Another key sentence by Foucault said, “On the whole, therefore, one can speak of the formation of a disciplinary society in this movement that stretches from the enclosed disciplines, a sort of social...
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