Panopticism in "Discipline and Punish" by unfrivbanneu.galt - Words | Essay Example


michel foucault panopticism essay

Michel Foucault in Discipline and Punish and The History of Sexuality, demonstrates that the tools of disciplinarity (which emerged in the confluence of critical, historical upheavals immediately preceding the modern age, such as geometric demographic expansion, reconfiguring global financial and mercantile apparatuses, the redefinition of territorial boundaries through global explosion and. A summary of Panopticism in Michel Foucault's Discipline and Punish. Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of Discipline and Punish and what it means. Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans. Panopticism Essay; Panopticism Essay. Words 4 Pages. In his essay “Panopticism,” Michel Foucault introduces the Panopticon structure as proof of modern society tending toward efficient disciplinary mechanisms. Starting with his example of the strict, intensely organized measures that are taken in a typical 17th-century plague-stricken.

Michel Foucault’s Panopticism - Essay

The theory of panopticism is very crucial for social and political development in society. This theory is built around the michel foucault panopticism essay of a panopticon. This is a circular building that has an observation tower at its center and an outer wall surrounding it. The wall of the panopticon has cells for its occupants. It seeks to explain the concept of security in the society. This paper explores the theory of panopticism as expounded by Michel Foucault.

It links this theory to several aspects in society. These include surveillance in a technology conscious society and power.

Also, it relates the concept of synopticism as explored by Methiesen to panopticism by Foucault. It uses simple, best, and updated prevailing societal examples to explore this concept. The theory of panopticism as expounded by Michael Foucault explains how power relations take place in society. The society is characterized by power systems that determine many political and social relations in society. This book is written metaphorically where life is likened to a panopticon.

According to Foucault, all aspects of life in the society are controlled by the authority. Therefore, michel foucault panopticism essay, the actions of people in the society are shaped, not by the strength of the locus of authority, but the fear of sanctions from those in power.

This is a real concept and can be likened to the theory of power by Gene Sharpe among many other political theorists. Foucault uses the example of the ancient cities in which lepers were separated from the healthy population by the authority. People in early societies were separated by the authority that led to the formation of classes in cities.

The authority discovered that it was easy to control people when they are subdivided into segments. Each segment has its characteristics, michel foucault panopticism essay, behaviors, and preference. This is the basis on which the Panopticon was developed Backer, The panopticon is used metaphorically and denotes a circular building that has multiple rings of cells on top of one another. There is a tower situated in the central part of the building that is used for monitoring the activities of the occupants.

The occupants are prisoners. The cells have enough space for more than a single prisoner and are separated from each other by walls to destruct prisoners from seeing each other. This is meant to bar the prisoners from meeting one another and acting collectively. They are left to work individually so that they can be easily manipulated.

The front of the cells is sealed by bars so that prisoners can easily be monitored from the monitor-tower. The back of the cells has windows that allow light into the cells thus prisoners cannot hide. The prisoners are powerless inside the panopticon, michel foucault panopticism essay. They can see the person at the tower, which according to Foucault, has no use since there are enough restrictions to prisoners from escaping.

The prisoners always have a fear of acting the reason being that they are being watched by the michel foucault panopticism essay at the tower which might not be the case. The guard may even be absent or not watching the prisoners Simon, According to Foucault, this situation can be likened to the workplace or a learning environment in the society where workers are curtailed by the supervisory restrictions.

Workers are forced to obey the orders, not by belief in the orders, but by virtue of fearing the reaction from the supervisors who are monitoring them. Thus, michel foucault panopticism essay, the bulk of societal institutions do not lie in those people who command power in them, but the fear of the vulnerable population serving the institutions Simon, The theory of panopticism by Foucault explains how power relations take place in society.

According to Foucault, power systems in the society are rooted in surveillance. Power systems in the society conditions people to have a certain code of behavior. The real panoptical power is evident in ancient disciplinary institutions like asylum centers, schools, factories, and even clinics. However, it is also evident in societal institutions in modern institutions that embrace modern technology as witnessed in spatial patterns of relations in the prevailing society.

The present society constitutes numerous aspects of surveillance. This is because the modern society has been marked with dangers emanating from natural and man-made michel foucault panopticism essay like earthquakes, terrorist activities, and epidemics.

Some of the perceived risks in society like terrorism utilize technology. Therefore, michel foucault panopticism essay, societal institutions are forced to respond to mitigate these risks by combining technology in their responses. The major source of insecurity to human life in the society today is the human being himself.

Thus, security systems are centered on monitoring humans Simon, The recent security events in the world like the September 11th terrorist attacks have spearheaded the use of technology in surveillance.

Security studies are becoming a common phenomena aiming to help bring about social order in the michel foucault panopticism essay. Surveillance systems that are commonly used in institutions michel foucault panopticism essay dataveillance and biometrics.

These security systems are being made to be a norm in the society. However, the implementation of these security systems has been questioned by many people leading to the question of whether they can truly result in the social order within the society. In the course of implementing security systems, many people are victimized with many innocent people dying in security operations Gray, People have been imprisoned into living by life itself in the society, michel foucault panopticism essay.

With the threats facing society, michel foucault panopticism essay in power have chosen to enhance surveillance mechanisms so that they are not reached with the wrath of the risks.

Individual lives of the subjects of power are subjected to checking, monitoring, and scrutiny. It is hard for any activity to go on in the absence of tracking, verification, and some other security devices. Human institutions are implementing digitalized systems of security for instance security alarms and surveillance cameras like the CCTV and other monitoring devices.

Surveillance is controlled from different angles most of which use computerized systems. While individuals are supposed to be protected michel foucault panopticism essay the surveillance mechanisms, they still remain to be subjects of surveillance itself. They are confronted in the daily activities by the surveillance activities all in the name of beefing up human security, michel foucault panopticism essay.

The people are confronted on a daily basis by surveillance activities. The michel foucault panopticism essay of technology are also exposed to the threats and dangers of cyber terrorists. However, they are also exposed to the dangers of victimization by the centers that control surveillance. Urban surveillance has been beefed up through the use of technological surveillance equipment.

However, the urban population has remained exposed to insecurity due to threats of terrorism. Until the surveillance is transformed into quantitative value, it will remain to be of little importance to the population Simon, When the political and social landscape is assessed, the features of organization in society are molded on the old forms.

The people are segmented by the michel foucault panopticism essay of the political, economic, and social forces in society. The only difference with the old societal organization is that the modern form of organization subdividing the society is more advanced. People often find themselves in groups unknowingly. The political, social, and economic forces are structured such that the result is segmentation of society for ease of control by the authority.

Power is a central issue in society and is the determinant of the way institutions functions in society. Panopticism explains how power influences the way people behave. It is evident in society today that power is being institutionalized. Societal institutions have organizational power that lies in the organizational leadership or management.

Workers in organizations act like prisoners in the panopticon. They are always pressures to deliver by the management, michel foucault panopticism essay. The administration of the public and private sectors is centered on regulations from the centers of power in the institutions. Political power influences the publics through sanctions and threats of not following a certain political course.

Many political institutions in the world are existent not because people like them but because people fear to react negatively on them because of the fear of reaction Backer, michel foucault panopticism essay, The concept of the synoptic on is an extrapolation of the concept of panopticon.

In this concept, panoptical power represents an important transformation of a situation where few people watch many people to a situation where many people watch the few. It offers another basis of explaining how societal institutions work. It is the opposite of panopticism and gives a new look into the understanding power relations in society.

The watchers as in the synopticon are faceted by locality and spirituality which makes them united in their course of action. It explicates the concept of power in social institutions form the global perspective as a result of globalization. The masses are becoming more proactive and shape political and social institutions and the actions of these institutions, michel foucault panopticism essay. This is evident in the global movements that are pushing for certain courses of humanity such as human rights and environmental michel foucault panopticism essay Mathiesen, The panopticon explains the concept of power or domination and control in society michel foucault panopticism essay the political and social authority.

It fails to explain how the society responds to the aspects of power and control in society. The synopticon theory is reactions and thus adds to the panopticon theory. It explains how the subjects of domination and control in society respond to power and how they influence they in turn influence the course of events. Therefore, the concept of the sysnopticon has a symbiotic relationship with the panopticism theory Mathiesen, The theory of panopticism is crucial in explaining how power works out in society, michel foucault panopticism essay.

It also helps explain the prevailing surveillance systems in this technological era, michel foucault panopticism essay. Power greatly influences the actions and behaviors of people in society. On the other hand, there is the theory of Synopticism which is a contradiction to panopticism.

It expounds how power plays out in the globalized society.


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michel foucault panopticism essay


Panopticism theory by Michel Foucault. The theory of panopticism as expounded by Michael Foucault explains how power relations take place in society. The society is characterized by power systems that determine many political and social relations in society. Foucault explains this theory in his book titled “Discipline and Punish: The birth of. In his essay Panopticism in Discipline & Punish, Michel Foucault introduces the Panopticon structure, the idea of Jeremy Bentham that is no communication between prisoners to each other to demonstrate a disciplinary mechanism, power. Nov 12,  · "Panopticism" is a chapter in Michel's Foucault's book "Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison" (). The book examines developments in Western penal systems and the formulation of contemporary prisons.