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Discipline and Punish

The art of punishing, then, must rest on a whole technology of representation (p. 445)
For the convict, the penalty is a mechanics of signs, interests, and duration. But the guilty person is
only one of the targets of punishment. For punishment is directed above all at others, at all the
potentially guilty. So these obstacle-signs that are gradually engraved in the representation of the
condemned man must therefore circulate rapidly and widely; they must be accepted aud redistributed
by all; they must shape the discourse that each individual has with others and by which crime is
forbidden to all by all (p. 448)
the law must appear to be a necessity of things: and power must act while concealing itself beneath
the gentle force of nature. (p. 445)
The Role of punishment:
First era of punishment discussed is directly communicated upon the body Note: Murder is followed
by death, generally in a symbolic fashion, communicated on the body: e.g (Murder through arson
would be followed by the defendant being burned at the stake) This eras symbolic economy is
characterized through terror, more specifically (Physical fear, collective horror, images that must be
engraved on the memories of the spectators (p. 449) Punishment such as a hot brand on the cheek
was seen as the discourse, the decipherable sign, the representation of public morality. (p. 449) For
Foucault, then, the representation of public morality at this time was torture
The next era of punishment is characterized not primarily upon the body, but on the soul (Foucault).
Through detainment and time (Foucault). Foucault does not argue that this period is any better.
The law is re-formed: it takes up its place on the side of the crime that violated it. The criminal, on the
other hand, is detached from society; he leaves it. (p. 450) A primary feature of punishment, was to
de-glorify the criminal, in other words: humiliation (Foucault.)
Differences and distinctions drawn out: The first is Monarchical law; Sovereignty, body is owned by the
king, punishment serves to fortify sovereignty, it is ritualistic, overt expression of power.
Other two are utilitarian, here power belongs to society as a whole (p. 454) The difference is through
mechanism. Public displays of torture vs. detainment
Panopticism
First, purpose: induce in the inmate a state of conscious and permanent visibility that assures the
automatic functioning of power. So to arrange things that the surveillance is permanent in its effects,
even if it is discontinuous in its action; that the perfection of power should tend to render its actual
exercise unnecessary; that this architectural apparatus should be a machine for creating and
sustaining a power relation independent of the person who exercises it; in short, that the inmates
should be caught up in a power situation of which they are themselves the bearers. (p. 456)
Shortest explanation on the structure: It is set up in a way so that only one guard needs to occupy a
central tower to potentially view all areas of the prison at all times. The end result is that all prisoners
simultaneously act as if they are under supervision at all times. Here is another inversion of a previous
mechanism of power: the dungeon. The panoptic mechanism arranges spatial unities that make it
possible to see constantly and to recognize immediately. In short, it reverses the principle of the
dungeon; or rather of its three functions to enclose, to deprive of light, and to hide it preserves
only the first and eliminates the other two. Full lighting and the eye of the supervisor capture better
than darkness, which ultimately protected.( p. 456) It is at this point that punishment is no longer
necessary. So to arrange things that the surveillance is permanent in its effects, even if it is
discontinuous in its action; that the perfection of power should tend to render its actual exercise
unnecessary (p.456)
A goal is to displace power from its overt authoritarian elements, and further naturalize power. A real
subjection is born mechanically from a fictitious relation (p. 457)

Diffusing this power, had the logical outcome of making the Panopticon a metaphor for the whole of
the social body: Is it surprising that prisons resemble factories, schools, barracks, hospitals, which all
resemble prisons? (p. 471)