Blog #61: Oh… so this is ACTUALLY prison :)

Blog 61: Read the rest of Foucault’s Panopticism pdf from page 6…”Bentham’s Panopticism,” to page 13 (the end).

Answer the following:

  • What does this reading remind you of in your daily lives? In what ways are you under constant surveillance? List as many as you can think of.

This reminds me of how everyone is kind of keeping everyone in check. If neighbors look our their window and see groups of people or even just one person out of place like on a playground or on a basketball court, they call the cops. The police are posted strategically around my neighborhood park right now making sure everyone is following social distancing rules. My parents are paying extra attention to my whereabouts and I am no longer allowed to leave the house (and obviously it’s the law).

  • How is Panopticism good for society during a pandemic? How is it not good for a society during a pandemic?

It’s helpful because people are encouraged to isolate themselves and stay away from those who are obviously infected. However, Panopticism assumes that everyone will want to follow the rules and that the consequences of not doing so will be enough to deter rule-breakers, but the response to COVID-19 has proven that is not always the case. People are still hanging out in groups and being careless. Everyone doesn’t feel equally powerful and accounted for because those who are isolated grow increasingly frustrated with those who keep prolonging the isolation period and allowing the virus to spread.

  • What ethical systems are involved in panopticism? 

Utilitariansim: Regardless of people’s intentions in dealing with a virus, it is ultimately about the conequences of their actions and the well being of the greater good (principle of utility)

  • What mechanisms of resistance exist against a Panoptic society?

-Lack of progress

-Reduced to its ideal form, any complications or non-compliances can ruin the entire structure

-Poor and imprisoned suffer more

-Lack of freedom

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