Thursday, May 14, 2009

On Governmentality

In Foucault's late work, the notion of government is elaborated within a kind of typology of forms of power that seeks to displace the immediate identification of power with domination. Government comes to be viewed as a kind of intermediate region which is not purely one of either freedom or domination, either consent or coercion. It is located between a primary type of power as an open, strategic and reversible set of relations between liberties, and domination as the fixing and blocking of these relations into permanent and hierarchical distributions. Government is between these two in that it involves a form of power over others that is made operable through the liberties of those over whom it is exercised.

Mitchell Dean Governmentality 1999: 46-7

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