Today’s lecture on Power was very insightful. It has also altared my original ideas on power and the components which fall in to it. Here’s a breakdown of my notes, key quotes, and what I learnt in the seminar.
Friedrich Nietzsche – (Power) Was a German philosopher, poet and composer. Pervasive struggle to master and extend control against resistance.
Jean-Francois Lyotard’s grand narratives:
- Becareful to debunk totalising meta-narratives, emphasises provisional, contingent, temporary and relative mini narratives.
Points out that move to create order or unity always creates disorder as well. Discourse is about relations of power.
Knowledge – Example of influential meta-narrative Lyotard
- Knowledge is produced for it’s own sake
- Knowledge wa produced for a subject in quest of emancipation.
- Every society exists for the good of it’s members.
Michel Foucault argues against this idea he looks at knowledge as a technique not just a thing. In his view knowledge ceases to be liberation and becomes a mode of surveillance, regulation, or a discipline.
Knowledge has power, it isn’t power!
Technology/ Technique – People do not have power explicitly rather power is a technique or action which individuals can engage in.
Government – All these techniques are designed to govern the population at every level.
Bio-Power – Discipline is a mechanism of power which regulates the behaviour of individuals in the social body. Bio-Power is a technology for managing populations.
Grand narratives is a totalising cultural narrative which orders and explains knowledge. A Meta narratives is basically a story within a story. Encompassing and explaining other little stories within a totalising scheme.
One of the examples I came up within the seminar session to break-down the huge word ‘Grand narrative’ was that ‘Day is safe/ night is dangerous’. The Grand narrative is safety. The discourse which lives within this narrative is the police which is apart of an institution, relationships, surroundings etc. To expand the police belongs to another discourse of crime, law and order. The police are also used as technology to control and govern the population.
Key note to take into the essay:
DON’T EXPLAIN THE EVENT IN QUESTION, SPEAK ABOUT HOW IT IS MEDIATED AS A SPECTACLE.
POWER IS ALWAYS IN A DISCOURSE
HOW POWER PLAYS INTO DISCOURSE