Originally posted on Installing (Social) Order:


A chapter of Michel Foucault’s famous 1977 Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison (1975, Surveiller et Punir: Naissance de la Prison) is titled “The Carceral.” In a few brief notes, I reconsider the chapter in light of contemporary discussions and literature.

As with so much of Foucault’s work, the chapter starts with a rich, seemingly (but not really) unorthodox example, in this case, the official opening of Mettray, a location where “disciplinary form at its most extreme” was born. Utilizing nearly every form of traditional organizational forms — the family, the army, the workshop, the classroom, and juridical ordering techniques –  such that those “young delinquents condemned by the courts” (as well as, I will note, boys charged, but acquitted, and yet were imprisoned as an alternative to “parental correction”) were to be overseen by “technicians of behavior; engineers of conduct, orthopaedists of individuality.”

As you can see…

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Originally posted on Deterritorial Investigations Unit:


Scrolling through the internet’s back pages, I came across this old Nettime post from 2009 by Florian Cramer urging us to move past the fixation that the art world and activism have with second-order cybernetics, complexity, and the powers held at the edge of chaos. Today we have Galloway and Thacker subverting Deleuze and Guattari with “no more rhizomes,” and as for exit paths from neoliberalism, disparate activities ranging from daily tinkerings to largely hidden subcultures and self-sustaining autonomous zones to the tactics being deployed in Latin and South America seem to hold more answers than some grand and immanent realization of global constituent power arising from transnational distributed network (though I have to admit here that I’m drawing a line between visions of a global society in the Communist trajectory and the very real ability for dissenting segments of civil society to interact and operating alongside each other irregardless…

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