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Abstract

The growth of the goernmentality literature represents a significant development in current social teory. However, certain prominent and interlinked tendencies, which are associated with the place of politics as a subject and object of theoretical work, are queried. Most especially the concerns are with: the rejection of critique as part of the work of social theory; the rendering of government programmes as univocal and as overly coherent and systematic; and the foucs on politics as “mentalities of rule” to the virutal exclusion of understanding politics as social relations. The paper explores some of these difficulties which are here seen as presending problems for the future devlopement of governmentality research and theory. Without aiming to systematize the literature, nevertheless the paper suggests that the time is overdue for central issues in the literature of govermentality to become the subject of more open and vigoruous debate.
... (McKee, 2009, pp. 475-476;O'Malley et al., 1997). Seeing power as being dispersed through society does not remove the role of the state as a central origin of power (McKee, 2009, p. 476). ...
... Alternatively, it has also been argued that governmentality does not form a coherent whole (Brady, 2014). Moreover, as governmentality has faced critique over the omnipresence of power (McKee, 2009;O'Malley et al., 1997), this type of generalisation is avoided in present thesis. Instead, as highlighted previously, understanding of governmentality in present research adopts a relative perspective, which encompasses multiple stakeholder perspectives, which amount to a heterogeneous, complex, and dynamic power. ...
... The governmentality approach has been subject to much debate around structure and agency (Joseph, 2008), as represented by the arguments that the omnipresence of power overrides agency of individuals (Gordon, 1991, p. 4;McKee, 2009, pp. 473-474;O'Malley et al., 1997). Governmentality is sometimes seen to represent post-structuralism, but here the questions over structure and agency are understood as something not related to this debate. ...
Thesis
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The energy system transition requires a radical transformation of the energy system. These changes reach out to the everyday lives of individuals making them key stakeholders in the transition. As the energy transition is not possible without the involvement of the public, questions over who participates (or does not, or cannot) and who benefits from the transition are not just moral considerations but also questions over the effectiveness of the transition. The main aim of this research is to evaluate emerging governance arrangements that facilitate public involvement in the energy transition. It examines key discourses in two case study countries (Scotland and Ireland) and analyses these using a governmentality approach. This facilitates the use of concepts such as problematisation, technologies and rationalities, which are used to investigate how varying stakeholders in Ireland and Scotland discuss the role of the public in the energy system. The data for this research consists of interviews with key stakeholders, policy documents, policy consultation submissions, public event recordings, and reports by key stakeholders. Analysing how public involvement in its many forms is problematised, what strategies are adopted, and what moral elaborations guide this gives insights into how the public is governed and what challenges and opportunities are connected to this. This resulted in several contributions. The research contributes to the understanding of the role of the public as involvement and advances the novel theoretical framing of a Whole-of-Society Approach. To analyse the connections between varying perspectives, another governmentality analytical tool, interplay, is introduced. The research also used novel data collection methods and an adaptive research approach. Lastly, the analysis of the interplay between perspectives highlights conflicts between how the public is imagined and the adopted practices, indicating a need to reconsider the prevalent rationalities connected to the involvement of the public in the energy transition.
... In other words, the research highlights the limits of governmentality studies that do not incorporate how governmental power intersects with global capitalism and territorial specificities. Moreover, the research enriches analyses of neoliberal subjectivation by underlying the patriarchal notion of economic value underpinning gendered development subjectivities, which marginalises the role of care and domestic work in the reproduction of local societies, and the different interests and deep-rooted practices within the state that influence development's processes of implementation (Altan-Olcay, 2016;Mckee, 2009;O'Malley et al., 1997). ...
... However, in their attempt to move on from previous totalising and universalising accounts, they have received critiques for disregarding how capitalism and neoliberal forms of government intersect and influence each other (Altan-Olcay, 2016;Caraher & Reuter, 2017;Sukarieh, 2016;Weidner, 2009). Indeed, although recent studies have expanded their scope to consider the irregularities within the programmes of governmentality and their different forms of internal and external contestation (Garmany, 2016;Li, 1999;McDonald, 1999;Mckee, 2009;O'Malley et al., 1997;Rankin, 2008;Rankin & Shakya, 2007), there is a need for more analyses that reflect on the role that capitalism and material/structural conditions play in neoliberal processes of subjectivation. ...
... By transforming individuals into autonomous, reasonable and docile subjects that take complete responsibility to handle the difficulties in their lives, development increasingly comprehends the inner self of the population it tries to assist. Although this subjectivity is associated with a depoliticisation of the population, as it undermines the responsibility of the state to modify the structural, cultural, economic and political roots of the problems, in practice, both the subjectivation process sought after and the depoliticisation of social and allocation problems are not fully achieved (Hart, 2004;O'Malley et al., 1997). In order to undertake a governmental analysis of the local effects of development, "we have to consider how governmentality is itself a conjunctural and crisis-ridden enterprise, how it engenders its own mode of resistance and makes, meets, moulds, or is contested by new subjects" (Gupta, 2001, p. 239). ...
Conference Paper
The thesis explores the process of neoliberal subjectivation in rural development in Chiloé, Chile, focusing mainly on the experience of local women. In general, the literature that critically explores rural development in southern Chile centres on the impact that extractivism and economic globalisation have on the environment and local livelihoods. Although these studies address essential issues such as rural-urban migration, the proletarianisation of farmers, and gender and cultural transformations, there is little analysis on the role that development has in shaping the behaviour and subjectivities of the rural population. The thesis aims to fill this gap by focusing on how the national and local state’s development practices and discourses shape people’s understanding of their own lives and their relationships with others. Empirically, the research focuses on a range of relevant governmental programmes during the salmon industry crisis and in the immediate aftermath. It draws on qualitative and quantitative data from diverse primary and secondary sources. Primary data includes interviews with local civil servants, programme implementers and civil society representatives, a socioeconomic household survey and in-depth interviews with local women. The thesis argues that there is no straightforward correspondence between what development intends to do and what occurs in practice. Although the efforts to create responsible, rational economic individuals shape the relation of the Chilean state with the rural poor, parallel state interventions and discourses do not necessarily point towards the same ideal. Building on these contradictions and their culture and knowledge, poor rural women in Central Chiloé find ways to deviate from neoliberal ideals and express subtle yet relevant critiques to the development approach of the Chilean state in rural territories.
... Omalley et al. [77] believed that overly political governmentality may impede policy implementation and advocated for public discussion of this notion. Carson [78] explored the effects of communalism on crime prevention strategies. ...
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Minds, behaviours and psyches are increasingly and explicitly problematized within social, economic, health, welfare, education and development policy, in both the global North and global South. While this shift is new, it also builds on a long colonial history of the constitution and governance of the ‘psy’. This special section considers these developments through critically engaging with them as human technologies whereby certain cognitions, affects and behaviours come to be made knowable, calculable and amenable to technological interventions and quantification. Starting with the concept of human technologies, this special section also seeks to extend it, troubling the prevailing account of technology’s role as governmentalization by placing this particular power/knowledge nexus in relation to other historical and current forms of power such as gender, race and coloniality. In this introduction to the special section, ‘Human technologies, affect and the global psy-complex’, we outline the conceptual and empirical contributions the collection of papers seeks to make.
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Chapter
Genealogy "opposes itself to the search for "origins"". "The development of humanity is a series of interpretations. The role of genealogy is to record its history: the history of morals, ideals, and metaphysical concepts, the history of the concept of liberty or the ascetic life". "Among the philosophers idiosyncrasies is a complete denial of the body". "Where religions once demanded the sacrifice of bodies, knowledge now calls for experimentation on ourselves, calls us to the sacrifice of the subject of knowledge. The desire for knowledge has been transformed among us into a passion which fears no sacrifice, which fears nothing but its own extinction. It may be that mankind will eventually perish from this passion for knowledge. If not through passion, than through weakness."
Book
Preface and Acknowledgements - PART 1: INTRODUCING ETHICAL CULTURE - 'The White Elephant's Nightmare' - Kant, Rhetoric and Civility - PART 2: TO GOVERN SEXUAL HARASSMENT - 'What Would He Know About Sexual Harassment?' - Ungovernable Conduct? - Social Theory and Legal Argument - Second Principles of Social Justice - Managing without a Politics of Subjectivity - PART 3: SOCIALIST POLITICS, LIBERAL GOVERNMENT - The Architecture of Legitimate Inequality - The Participatory Imperative - The Associations of Socialism - Notes - Table of Cases - Bibliography - Index
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