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Discipline & Punish: The Birth of the Prison (1975)

by Michel Foucault

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
6,070341,395 (4.13)47
In this brilliant work, the most influential philosopher since Sartre suggests that such vaunted reforms as the abolition of torture and the emergence of the modern penitentiary have merely shifted the focus of punishment from the prisoner's body to his soul.
  1. 10
    Mord, Geständnis, Widerruf : Verhören und Verhörtwerden um 1800 by Michael Niehaus (Christof.Capellaro)
    Christof.Capellaro: Stellt an einem konkreten Einzelfall dar, was Foucault im großen Ganzen untersucht. (Wandel der Verfolgung von Delinquenz Ende des 18./Anfang des 19. Jahrhunderts).
  2. 01
    The Fatal Shore by Robert Hughes (thorold)
    thorold: Two contrasting views of the birth of the prison system in the 19th century

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» See also 47 mentions

English (25)  Spanish (2)  French (1)  Korean (1)  Finnish (1)  Dutch (1)  Italian (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Danish (1)  All languages (35)
Showing 1-5 of 25 (next | show all)
This was an interesting book, but very dry and over my head at times. There were times I feel like you have to know about French history and French prisons to fully get this book. I think I made mistake reading this book first. I wouldn't recommended it unless you have a strong interest for philosophy, criminology, and/or French history. It's obvious Foucault was channeling Marx, Rousseau, and de Sade in this book (he never talks about de Sade, but it reminded me of de Sade's philosophy). I'm still interested in reading more of Foucault. ( )
  Ghost_Boy | Aug 25, 2022 |
It's Foucault! It's about power. This time he explores the ideas of power through looking at the hisotry of discipline--usually state but sometimes civil. The relationship of the individual to the society and the government/soverign is explored form the age of toruture on. ( )
  M.J.Perry | Apr 21, 2022 |
  laplantelibrary | Dec 14, 2021 |
I must say that "Discipline and Punish" is a difficult book to review. It is excellent, and it is deep. The book starts with the description of a prisoner being tortured and killed. The final stages of the torture, and the execution used to take place in the public sphere.

We may be squeamish today, but we cannot state that torture has disappeared from the world. It has just disappeared from the public eye.

From there, he moves on to the concept of punishment, and the various theories that prevailed. And, of course, the practices. For me, the most interesting chapters were those that pertained to discipline, the panopticon, and delinquency.

I don't think that 'the birth of the prison' is a good subtitle. This book is much deeper than that.

It revolves around the concept of power (initially with the king), punishment, society's attitudes towards this, discipline and society; and finally, the Panopticon. This concept was centuries ahead of its time.

In many ways, society is living in a Panopticon today. ( )
  RajivC | Apr 11, 2021 |
Happy fun holiday reading...
  irrelephant | Feb 21, 2021 |
Showing 1-5 of 25 (next | show all)
Whatever the disagreements, "Discipline and Punish" is that rare kind of book whose methods and conclusions must be reckoned with by humanists, social scientists and political activists.

» Add other authors (65 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Michel Foucaultprimary authorall editionscalculated
Blumbergs, IlmārsCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Geile-Sīpolniece, IntaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pelikán, ČestmírTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sheridan, AlanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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In this brilliant work, the most influential philosopher since Sartre suggests that such vaunted reforms as the abolition of torture and the emergence of the modern penitentiary have merely shifted the focus of punishment from the prisoner's body to his soul.

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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Tantor Media

An edition of this book was published by Tantor Media.

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