Facebook as a Manifestation of Disciplinary Power
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The paper explores French philosopher Michel Foucault's idea of disciplinary power to determine if Internet applications of social media websites such as Facebook can be considered a manifestation of disciplinary power. The paper looks at Foucault's inherent concern for the exercise of power in modern social institutions such as prisons and discusses Jeremy Bentham's Panopticon, which is a prison designed to allow inmates to constantly be visually monitored without their being aware of the spectator's gaze. The paper points out some significant points of variance between Panopticism and Facebook but concludes that regardless of whether or not Facebook is the ultimate epitome of vigilance that Panopticism represents, it can certainly be considered one of the most eminent means of visibility in contemporary society, and therefore a manifestation of disciplinary power.
From the Paper:"Even a cursory view of Foucault's written works will demonstrate the author's inherent concern for the exercise of power in modern social institutions such as prisons, which are readily supplied with occupants by the police (Discipline and Punish, part 3, chapter 3, p 213). The philosopher believes that the focus of such social institutions (and prisons in particular) is to reform people rather than to merely inflict punishment upon them, which partially explains their resemblance to other correctional facilities and socio-economic institutions such as schools, factories and hospitals (Discipline and Punish, part 3, chapter 3, p 205). The means by which they do so, however, are decidedly at variance with the typical corrective measures employed by traditional sovereign power structures in centuries prior to the 20th. Instead of publicly executing someone as a means of protecting society, modern social institutions have linked knowledge to power (History of Sexuality Volume 1, part 4, chapter 3, p. 107) to achieve a subtler method of reforming and even conforming society to its social conventions and mores. Disciplinary power, then, is based upon techniques of partitioning and visibility to allow social institutions to produce helpful individuals through the security and regulation of human differences."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Foucault, M. (1978). The History of Sexuality Volume I: An Introduction. New York: Pantheon Books.
- Foucault, M. (1975). Discipline and Punishment: The Birth of the Prison. New york: Vintage Books.
- Bentham, J.. (1995) Panopticon. In Miran Bozovic (ed.), The Panopticon Writings, London: Verso.
- Smart, Barry (1994). Michel Foucault. New York: Routledge.
- Halperin, David (1997). Saint Foucault. Oxford University Press, USA.
Cite this Analytical Essay:
Facebook as a Manifestation of Disciplinary Power (2013, June 07) Retrieved October 17, 2019, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/facebook-as-a-manifestation-of-disciplinary-power-153509/
"Facebook as a Manifestation of Disciplinary Power" 07 June 2013. Web. 17 October. 2019. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/facebook-as-a-manifestation-of-disciplinary-power-153509/>