Foucault's Expulsion of Law: Towards a Retrieval

Mian, Emran (1999) Foucault's Expulsion of Law: Towards a Retrieval. MPhil(R) thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

In the change in the paradigm of power from the monarchic to the disciplinary traced by Michel Foucault in his grand genealogies, there is also a tendency to effect an expulsion of law. Foucault contends that power has changed in its nature from being centrist and repressive to being diffuse, micro-level and creative. Power has become normative and normalising. The most important sites of power now are not monarchic ones, but instead, the prison, the school, the doctor's surgery, one's own friends and neighbours and ultimately, one's own (constructed) conscience. Foucault goes on from this diagnosis to state that law no longer connects with power, it exists on a different scale and operates through different and outdated modes. It is the argument of this thesis that Foucault makes these claims about law only because he does not pause to understand fully the nature of law. This thesis will attempt to establish that law is a much more social and diffuse mechanism than Foucault was prepared to concede. Subsequently, it will be argued that in fact despite the tenor of the better known of Foucault's remarks about the law, there are also suggestions in his work about a new meld between law and discipline, and the creation of a combined, synergistic normative framework. Finally, briefly, there will be an analysis of ways in which resistance can be effected through the law. Hence the law is by no means irrelevant as Foucault sometimes claimed, instead it is critical and a potential source of hope in 'the carceral archipelago'.

Item Type: Thesis (MPhil(R))
Qualification Level: Masters
Keywords: Philosophy, Philosophy of science
Date of Award: 1999
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:1999-75390
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 19 Nov 2019 20:19
Last Modified: 19 Nov 2019 20:19
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/75390

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