The “Phenomenon of Visibility” in Foucault’s “Panopticon”


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Essay #: 068659
Total text length is 5,253 characters (approximately 3.6 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
The "Phenomenon of Visibility" in Foucault’s "Panopticon"
This study will analyze the “phenomenon of visibility” of Foucault’s Panopticon to describe how knowledge and power control the training of discipline in the prison. By using Bentham’s theory of the Panopticon, Foucault defines a prison design in which a central tower sees into the prison cells of all inmates, which does not allow inmates to see each other. This source of power dominates the training of discipline and punishment because only the tower (the source of power in the sovereign) dominates knowledge and the distribution of information. In essence, Foucault defines the Panopticon as a source of power domination over knowledge to segregate and punishment those in society...
The end:
.....he prison tower controls the visibility of the inmate in Foucault’s explanation of the Panopticon.
In conclusion, the phenomenon of visibility in Foucault’s explanation of Bentham’s Panopticon defines how power and knowledge are controlled in the prison complex. By observing how prison cells and the centralized tower limit the visibility of the inmate, the sovereigns control the knowledge they receive while being constantly observed. In essence, the ability to punish and discipline through the Panopticon reveals Foucault’s symbolic representation of Bentham’s theory through the lens of disciplines training in the phenomenon of visibility in Discipline and Punish.
Works Cited:
Foucault, Michel. Discipline and Punish. New York: Vintage, 1995.