Philosophical Fragments

Q [Interviewer]: Why do you see the birth of the prison--and, in particular, this process you call "hurried substitution," which in the early years of the nineteenth century establishes the prison at the center of the new penal system-as being so important? Aren't you inclined to overstate the importance of the prison in penal history, … Continue reading Philosophical Fragments

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Foucault and the Individual

"The individual is not to be conceived as a sort of elementary nucleus, a primitive atom, a multiple and inert material on which power comes to fasten or against which it happens to strike, and in so doing subdues or crushes individuals. In fact, it is already one of the prime effects of power that … Continue reading Foucault and the Individual

“Feminist Consumerism and Fat Activists: A Comparative Study of Grassroots Activism and the Dove Real Beauty Campaign”

"Both the Dove Real Beauty Campaign and PPPO [Pretty, Porky, and Pissed Off] claim to challenge hegemonic beauty codes that articulate a virtually unachievable conception of physical beauty. Given the extent to which these images of models affect women’s self-perceptions, it may come as little surprise that only 2% of women describe themselves as beautiful. In response, Dove has committed itself to … Continue reading “Feminist Consumerism and Fat Activists: A Comparative Study of Grassroots Activism and the Dove Real Beauty Campaign”

The Chomsky-Foucault Debate

In 1971, Noam Chomsky and Michel Foucault debated on a few topics, by no means mutually exclusive: "human nature" (or whether there was such a thing), the "ideal society", and "justice" and "power". Make sure to put on English subtitles if necessary, as Foucault speaks in French, though Chomsky speaks in English (alternatively, a full English transcript of … Continue reading The Chomsky-Foucault Debate

Patriarchal Internalization and Resistance to, or; ‘Why Isn’t Every Woman a Feminist?’

“As noted earlier, women punish themselves too for the failure to conform. The growing literature on women’s body size is filled with wrenching confessions of shame from the overweight: I felt clumsy and huge. I felt that I would knock over furniture, bump into things, tip over chairs, not fit into VW’s, especially when people … Continue reading Patriarchal Internalization and Resistance to, or; ‘Why Isn’t Every Woman a Feminist?’

Patriarchy and the Panopticon

"The woman who checks her make-up half a dozen times a day to see if her foundation has caked or her mascara run, who worries that the wind or rain may spoil her hairdo, who looks frequently to see if her stockings have bagged at the ankle, or who, feeling fat, monitors everything she eats, … Continue reading Patriarchy and the Panopticon

Foucault, Feminism, and Sex Crimes

At the end of last month, The New York Times ran an article entitled "Punishment That Doesn't Fit the Crime" discussing juvenile sex crimes. The article goes on to say that 24,000 youth make up 800,000 of registered sex offenders, with more than one-third of that youth aged 12 to 14, arguably too young to … Continue reading Foucault, Feminism, and Sex Crimes