Power (PHI2121.01)

Catherine McKeen

There is a central guard tower that looks out over all the cells. Within the cells, the inmates are constantly observable. Brutal force becomes unnecessary. The inmates will control their own behavior, often without even realizing it. This is the modern way of power, according to Michel Foucault: furtive, efficient, diffuse, minute, and ubiquitous. In this course, we’ll undertake a philosophical investigation into the nature and workings of power. How is the social world shaped? How do language, knowledge, and power interact? What are the prospects for resistance? We will use the methods of philosophical analysis, argument, and close reading. Likely readings include work by: Hannah Arendt, Judith Butler, Franz Fanon, Michel Foucault, Ian Hacking, Saidiya Hartman, and Sylvia Wynter.

Learning Outcomes:
• De-code and make sense of difficult texts
• Ask strong questions, engage thoughtfully with a range of philosophical views
• Analyze philosophical views and arguments
• Develop your ideas in writing using appropriate evidence and support

Delivery Method: Fully in-person
Course Level: 2000-level
Credits: 4
M/Th 10:00AM - 11:50AM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 16
Course Frequency: One time only

Categories: 2000 , All courses , Four Credit , Fully In-Person , Philosophy