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The list serves : the apparatuses of security and governmentality


The list serves : the apparatuses of security and governmentality

Werbin, Kenneth C (2008) The list serves : the apparatuses of security and governmentality. PhD thesis, Concordia University.

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Inspired by taxonomist Jack Goody's theorizing of 'ancient lists' as 'intellectual technologies,' this research analyzes listing practices in modern and contemporary formations of power, and how they operate in the installation and securing of the uncertain political economic milieus of circulation that characterize Michel Foucault's conception of governmentality. Propelling the list's critical operations in the delimitation and policing of 'threatening' movements from out of modern history, and into a contemporary analysis of power, this research demonstrates how the correlation of computer, statistical, and list technologies and techniques first installed under the Nazi regime , continues to factor significantly in the segmenting and constitution of a most critical classification of contemporary homo sapiens : the terrorist class, or homo sacer . Indeed, in this analysis of how lists serve formations of power, Foucault's populations and milieus of circulation installed through the apparatuses of security are reconciled with Giorgio Agamben's theorizing of 'bare life' as the fundamental political unit of modern and contemporary sovereignty. Investigating how lists served the emergence of modern computers , and continue to correlate power/knowledge in contemporary assemblages like no-fly lists ; as well as in a series of increasingly pervasive and ubiquitous watch-list conjunctures , this research characterizes the technoscientific cultural construction of the contemporary terrorist as a critical function of no-blank list culture . In this way, it is argued here that the list is not simply an innocuous tool of everyday life for administering the minutiae of mundane existence, but rather, operates as a security technology of contemporary governmentality--a critical support of juridical-disciplinary mechanisms and assemblages of police--with the dual role and double integration effect of self-elaborating and securing the classes of 'factual' knowledge it itself calls into 'truthful' reality.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Communication Studies
Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Authors:Werbin, Kenneth C
Pagination:viii, 273 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Ph. D.
Program:Communication Studies
Thesis Supervisor(s):Sawchuk, Kim
Identification Number:LE 3 C66C66P 2008 W47
ID Code:975873
Deposited By: Concordia University Library
Deposited On:22 Jan 2013 16:16
Last Modified:13 Jul 2020 20:08
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