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The principle of “initial” panopticon is as follows: there is a building which has a circular form (a ring), and in its centre there is a tower. The tower has big windows which face the interior side of the ring. The tower standing against the light, the prisoners’ figures can be seen clearly.
Michel Foucault defines panoptism either as a concrete light organization which is characteristic for a prison, or as an abstract principle, a certain “mechanism” which is able to penetrate into all functions and structures, all sides of human life. An abstract formula of panoptism is, therefore, not “to see without being seen”, but to force a certain type of behaviour onto any number of people, any society. This social group should be reduced, placed into an enclosed space. A certain type of behaviour is enforced by means of relocation in space, classification in time, arrangement in space and time. Power is not necessarily a centralized power of a state. According to M. Foucault, the State itself emerges as a result of cooperation of numerous mechanisms and centres, which are situated at a different level and independently form the microphysics of power.
How is the idea of Foucault reflected in our everyday life? In fact, all modern societies can be classified as “disciplinary” societies, “discipline” being a type of power, a technology penetrating all possible institutions, connecting them, prolonging their existence, stimulating their convergence and exposition in a brand-new regime. Army, schools, hospitals, and other institutions have more and more widely used such mechanisms of power illustrated by “Panopticon”. The spread of these mechanisms led to creation of the “disciplined society”, in which the “visibility” of the minority by the majority was gradually forced out by the “visibility” of the majority by the minority”, and the spectacular
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(“Philosophy presentation Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 words”, n.d.)
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“Philosophy Presentation Essay Example | Topics and Well Written Essays - 1000 Words”, n.d. https://studentshare.org/miscellaneous/1554948-philosophy-presentation.
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