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Pornography and power in Michel Foucault’s thought

Kurylo, Bohdana (2017) Pornography and power in Michel Foucault’s thought. Journal of Political Power, 10 (1). pp. 71-84. ISSN 2158-379X

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Identification Number: 10.1080/2158379X.2017.1284157


This paper reconstructs Michel Foucault’s account of pornography by placing it into his theory of power. To explain the novelty of Foucault’s position, it counterpoises it with anti-pornography feminism and its analysis of the modern state. The paper argues that Foucault considered pornography to be a strategy of biopower to regulate individual sexual conduct. By inciting the discourse on sex, pornography participates in the production of truth about sex. Through confession, its consumers discover their sexual identities, becoming self-regulating. The result is a proliferation of sexualities, but also their rigidification and categorisation, leading to a mass deployment of perversion.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2017 Informa UK
Divisions: Government
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Date Deposited: 03 Mar 2017 09:42
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2024 02:06

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