Course Hero. "Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison Study Guide." Course Hero. 7 Feb. 2019. Web. 23 Feb. 2019. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Discipline-and-Punish-The-Birth-of-the-Prison/>.
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Course Hero. "Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison Study Guide." February 7, 2019. Accessed February 23, 2019. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Discipline-and-Punish-The-Birth-of-the-Prison/.
Course Hero, "Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison Study Guide," February 7, 2019, accessed February 23, 2019, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Discipline-and-Punish-The-Birth-of-the-Prison/.
In Discipline and Punish Foucault traces the development of the modern prison system through the legal and political history of France. The prison, he argues, embodies a view of justice that makes it fundamentally different from older forms of punishment, such as public executions and torture. In Foucault's analysis prisons are places of discipline: their purpose is not necessarily to prevent or even punish crime so much as to change the habits of offenders. Although Foucault wrote extensively about power relations in public and private life, Discipline and Punish remains his best known single work. Its insights are applicable not only to literal prisons but to any system—schools, hospitals, workplaces—in which order is established through an enforced routine.
The title refers to the rise of the modern prison system as a replacement for older forms of penal justice. Foucault describes this system as designed not only to punish crime but also to discipline offenders by changing their behavior.
This study guide for Michel Foucault's Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison offers summary and analysis on themes, symbols, and other literary devices found in the text. Explore Course Hero's library of literature materials, including documents and Q&A pairs.