How Do Public Bathrooms Operate as Sites of 'Biopolitical' and 'Anatomo-Political' Struggle?
Indeed, whether Foucault provides us with a coherent theory or concept of biopolitics is debatable.
In the modern era, Foucault contended, there was a virtual—explosion of numerous and diverse techniques for achieving the subjugation of bodiesand the control of populations,“ thus forcing juridical forms of power.. These productive controls depend primarily upon knowledge:knowledge of populations and the individuals that comprise them. It is such knowledge(and the application of such knowledge) that, for Foucault, essentially constitutes modernpower.Several types of knowledges (savoirs) or disciplines were established inmodernity that placed the body (both the body of individuals and the body ofpopulations) under intense scrutiny. These disciplines comprise what might becollectively called the human sciences; psychology, sociology, medicine, criminology,etc. .
I will argue that Foucault’s analysis ofsubjectivation leads him to pose the question of the mode of subjectivation, that is,how an individual makes himself a subject according to an exterior ethical code.This is where Foucault begins to distance himself from the genealogies of powerand moves towards investigations concerning ethical techniques of the self(Foucault 1990, 1-32; 1997c).
Hardt, Michael and Negri, Antonio (2000): Empire. Harvard University Press,Massachusetts
Virtanen, Akseli (2006): Biopoliittisen talouden kritiikki. Tutkijaliitto, Helsinki.Vähämäki, Jussi (2005): “Esipuhe” in Gilles Deleuze: Haastatteluja. Tutkijaliitto,Helsinki.