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From Biopower to Biopolitics*

Maurizio Lazzarato
1. Michel Foucault, through the concept of biopolitics, was already pointing out in the seventies what, nowadays, is well on its way to being obvious: 'life' and 'living being' [le vivant] are at the heart of new political battles and new economic strategies. He also demonstrated that the 'introduction of life into history' corresponds with the rise of capitalism. In effect, from the 18th Century onwards the dispositifs of power and knowledge begin to take into account the 'processes of life' and the possibility of controlling and modifying them. 'Western man gradually learns what it means to be a living species in a living world, to have a body, conditions of existence, probabilities of life, an individual and collective welfare, forces that could be modified...' That life and living being, that the species and its productive requirements have moved to the heart of political struggle is something that is radically new in human history. 'For millennia, man remained what he was for Aristotle: a living animal with the additional capacity for a political existence; modern man is an animal whose politics places his existence as a living being in question.' The patenting of the human genome and the development of artificial intelligence; biotechnology and the harnessing of lifes forces for work, trace a new cartography of biopowers. These strategies put in question the forms of life itself. The works of Michel Foucault, however, focus only indirectly upon the description of these new biopowers. If power seizes life as the object of its exercise then Foucault is interested in determining what there is in life that resists, and that, in resisting this power, creates forms of subjectification and forms of life that escape its control. It seems to me that the common theme traversing all of Foucaults thought is the attempt to specify the requirements of a new 'process of political creativity that the great political institutions and parties confiscated after the 19th Century.' In effect, Foucault interprets the introduction of 'life into history' constructively because it presents the opportunity to propose a new ontology, one that begins with the body and its potential, that regards the 'political subject as an ethical one' against the prevailing tradition of Western thought which understands it as a 'subject of law.' Rather than starting from a theory of obedience and its legitimating forms, its dispositifs and practices, Foucault interrogates power beginning with the 'freedom' and the 'capacity for transformation' that every 'exercise of power' implies. The new ontology sanctioned by the introduction of 'life into history' enables Foucault to 'defend the subject's freedom' to establish relationships with himself and with others, relationships that are, for him, the very stuff [matire] of ethics. Habermas and the philosophers of the Constitutional State are not wrong in taking Foucaults thought as their privileged target because it represents a radical alternative to a transcendental ethics of communication and the rights of man. 2. Giorgio Agamben, recently, in a book inscribed explicitly within the research being undertaken on the concept of biopolitics, insisted that the theoretical and political distinction established in antiquity between zoe and bios, between natural life and political life, between man as a living being [simple vivant] whose sphere of influence is in the home and man as a political subject whose sphere of influence is in the polis, is 'now nearly unknown to us.' The introduction of the zoe into the sphere of the polis is, for both Agamben and Foucault, the decisive event of modernity; it marks a radical transformation of the political and philosophical categories of classical thought. But is this impossibility of distinguishing between zoe and bios, between man as a living being and man as a political subject, the product of the action of sovereign power or the result of the action of new forces over which power has 'no control?' Agambens response is very ambiguous and it oscillates continuously between these two alternatives. Foucaults response is entirely different: biopolitics is the form of government taken by a new dynamic of forces that, in conjunction, express power relations that the classical world could not have known.

Foucault described this dynamic, in keeping with the progress of his research, as the emergence of a multiple and heterogeneous power of resistance and creation that calls every organization that is transcendental, and every regulatory mechanism that is extraneous, to its constitution radically into question. The birth of biopower and the redefinition of the problem of sovereignty are only comprehensible to us on this basis. Foucaults entire work leads toward this conclusion even if he did not coherently explain the dynamic of this power, founded on the 'freedom' of 'subjects' and their capacity to act upon the 'conduct of others,' until the end of his life. Foucault analyzed the introduction of 'life into history' through the development of political economy. He demonstrated how the techniques of power changed at the precise moment that economy (strictly speaking, the government of the family) and politics (strictly speaking, the government of the polis) became imbricated with one another. The new biopolitical dispositifs are born once we begin to ask ourselves, 'What is the correct manner of managing individuals, goods and wealth within the family (which a good father is expected to do in relation to his wife, children and servants) and of making the family fortunes prosper--how are we to introduce this meticulous attention of the father towards his family into the management of the State?' Why should we look for the 'arcana imperii' of modernity within political economy? Biopolitics, understood as a government-population-political economy relationship, refers to a dynamic of forces that establishes a new relationship between ontology and politics. The political economy that Foucault talks about is neither the political economy of capital and work of classical economists, nor the Marxist economic critique of 'living labor.' It is a political economy of forces that is very close yet very distant from either of these points of view. It is very close to Marxs viewpoint because the problem of how to coordinate and command the relationships between men, insofar as they are living beings, and those of men with 'things,' keeping the aim of extracting a 'surplus of power' in mind, is not simply an economic problem but an ontological one. It is very distant because Foucault faulted Marx and political economy with reducing the relations between forces to relations between capital and labor, with making these binary and symmetric relations the source of all social dynamics and every power relation. The political economy that Foucault talks about, on the contrary, governs 'the whole of a complex material field where not only are natural resources, the products of labor, their circulation and the scope of commerce engaged, but where the management of towns and routes, the conditions of life (habitat, diet, etc.), the number of inhabitants, their life span, their ability and fitness for work also come into play.' Political economy, as a syntagm of biopolitics, encompasses power dispositifs that amplify the whole range of relations between the forces that extend throughout the social body rather than, as in classical political economy and its critique, the relationship between capital and labor exclusively . Foucault needs a new political theory and a new ontology to describe the new power relations expressed in the political economy of forces. In effect, biopolitical dispositifs are first 'grafted' and then 'anchored' upon a multiplicity of consensual relations [de commandemant et d'obissance], relations between forces which power 'coordinates, institutionalizes, stratifies and targets,' but that cannot be reduced to the pure and simple projection of power upon individuals. The fundamental political problem of modernity is not that of a single source of sovereign power, but that of a multitude of forces that act and react amongst each other according to relations of command and obedience. The relations between man and woman, master and student, doctor and patient, employer and worker, that Foucault uses to illustrate the dynamics of the social body are relations between forces that always involve a power relation. If power, in keeping with this description, is constituted from below, then we need an ascending analysis of the constitution of power dispositifs, one that begins with infinitesimal mechanisms that are subsequently 'invested, colonized, utilized, involuted, transformed and institutionalized by ever more general mechanisms, and by forms of global domination.' Consequently, biopolitics is the strategic coordination of these power relations in order to extract a surplus of power from living beings. Biopolitics is a strategic relation; it is not the pure and simple

capacity to legislate or legitimize sovereignty. According to Foucault the biopolitical functions of 'coordination and determination' concede that biopower, from the moment it begins to operate in this particular manner, is not the true source of power. Biopower coordinates and targets a power that does not properly belong to it, that comes from the 'outside.' Biopower is always born of something other than itself. 3. Historically, the socialization of the forces that political economy attempts to govern calls sovereign power into crisis; these forces compel the biopolitical technologies of government into an 'immanence', one that grows increasingly extensive, with 'society.' This socialization always forces power to unfold in dispositifs that are both 'complementary' and 'incompatible,' that express an 'immanent transcendence in our actuality,' that is to say, an integration of biopower and sovereign power. In effect, the emergence of the interdependent [solidaire] art of government-population-wealth series radically displaces the problem of sovereignty. Foucault does not neglect the analysis of sovereignty, he merely asserts that the grounding force will not be found on the side of power, since power is 'blind and weak,' but on the side of the forces that constitute the 'social body' or ''society.' Sovereign power is blind and weak but that does not signify, by any means, that it lacks efficacy: its impotence is ontological. We do a disservice to Foucaults thought when we describe its course through the analysis of power relations as a simple succession and substitution of different dispositifs, because the biopolitical dispositif does not replace sovereignty, it displaces its function and renders the 'problem of its foundation even more acute.' 'Accordingly, we need to see things not in terms of the replacement a society of sovereignty by a disciplinary society and the subsequent replacement of a disciplinary society of by a society of government; in reality one has a triangle, sovereignty-discipline-government, which has the population as its primary target.' It would be better to try to think through the articulation and distribution of the different dispositifs that are present simultaneously in the linkage of government, population and political economy. Can we then understand the development of biopolitics as the necessity to assure an immanent and strategic coordination of forces, rather than as the organization of a unilateral power relation? What we need to emphasize is the difference of the principles and the dynamics that regulate the socialization of forces, sovereign power and biopower. The relations between the latter two are only comprehensible on the basis of the multiple and heterogeneous action of forces. Without the introduction of the 'freedom' and the resistance of forces the dispositifs of modern power remain incomprehensible, and their intelligibility will be inexorably reduced to the logic of political science. Foucault explains the issue in the following manner: 'So resistance comes first, and resistance remains superior to the other forces of the process; power relations are obliged to change to change with the resistance. So I think that resistance is the main word, the keyword, in this dynamic.' 4. In the seventies Foucault essentially formulates this new conception of power by means of the models of battle and war. In this way of understanding power and social relations there really is a 'freedom' (an autonomy and an independence) of the forces in play, but it is rather a freedom that is constituted as the 'power to deprive others.' In effect, in war there are the strong and the weak, the clever and the naive, the victorious and the vanquished, and they are all acting 'subjects,' they are 'free' even if this freedom only consists of the appropriation, the conquest and the submission of other forces. Foucault, who made this model of power, a 'warlike clash of forces,' work against the philosophicojuridical tradition of contract and sovereignty, is firmly entrenched within a paradigm where the articulation of the concepts of the power, difference and freedom of forces already serves to explain social relations. Yet this 'philosophy' of difference risks understanding all the relationships between men, regardless of the actual nature of these relationships, as relations of domination. Foucaults

thought will be forced to confront this impasse. Nonetheless, bodies are not always trapped in the dispositifs of power. Power is not a unilateral relation, a totalitarian domination over individuals, such as the one exercised by the dispositif of the Panopticon, but a strategic relation. Every force in society exercises power and that power passes through the body, not because power is omnipotent and omniscient but because every force is a power of the body. Power comes from below; the forces that constitute it are multiple and heterogeneous. What we call power is an integration, a coordination and determination of the relations between a multiplicity of forces. How are we to liberate this new conception of power, one based upon the potential, difference and autonomy of forces, from the model of 'universal domination?' How are we to call forth a 'freedom' and a force that is not merely one of domination and resistance? In response to this questioning Foucault moved from the model of war to that of 'government.' The thematic of government was already present in Foucaults reflection since it illustrated the biopolitical exercise of power. The displacement that Foucault enacts, sometime in the eighties, consists in considering the 'art of governance' not merely as a strategy of power, even if it is biopolitical power, but as the action of subjects upon others and upon themselves. He searched amongst the ancients for the answer to this question: how do subjects become active, how is the government of the self and others open to subjectifications that are independent of the biopolitical art of government? Consequently, The 'government of souls' is always at stake in political struggle and cannot be formulated, exclusively, as biopower's modality of action. The passage into ethics is an internal necessity to the foucauldian analysis of power. Gilles Deleuze is right in pointing out that there is a single Foucault, not two; the Foucault of the analysis of power and the Foucault of the problematic of the subject. A persistent questioning ranges the whole of Foucaults work: how are we to seize these infinitesimal, diffused and heterogeneous power relations so that they do not always result in phenomena of domination or resistance? How can this new ontology of forces open up to unexpected processes of political constitution and independent processes of subjectification? 5. In the eighties, after a long detour through ethics, Foucault finally returned to his concept of 'power'. In his last interviews Foucault criticized himself because he thought that 'like many others, he had not been clear enough and had not used the proper terms to speak of power.' He saw his work retrospectively as an analysis and a history of the different modalities through which human beings are constituted as subjects in Western culture, rather than as an analysis of the transformations of the dispositifs of power. 'Therefore it is not power, but the subject, that constitutes the general theme of my investigations.' The analysis of power dispositifs should then begin, without any ambiguity, with the dynamic of forces and the 'freedom' of subjects, and not with the dynamics of institutions, even if they are biopolitical institutions, because if one starts to pose the question of power starting from the institution one will inevitably end up with a theory of the 'subject of law'. In this last and definitive theory of 'power' Foucault distinguishes three different concepts which are usually confused within a single category: strategic relations, techniques of government and states of domination. He asserts that, above all, it is necessary to speak of power relations rather than power alone, because the emphasis should fall upon the relation itself rather than on its terms, the latter are not causes but mere effects. His characterization of strategic relations as a play of 'infinitesimal, mobile, reversible and unstable' power is already in place in the seventies. The new modality that expresses the exercise of power at the interior of relationships, amorous, teacher and student relations, husband and a wife, children and parents, etc., is already found in the nietzschean concept of 'forces' that was the precursor to Foucault's conception of 'strategic relations.' This modality, defined as an 'action upon an action,' spreads through the will to 'control the conduct of others.'

' It seems to me that we must distinguish between power relations understood as strategic games between liberties--in which some try to control the conduct of others, who in turn try to avoid allowing their conduct be controlled or try to control the conduct of others--and the states of domination that people ordinarily call power.' Power is defined, from this perspective, as the capacity to structure the field of action of the other, to intervene in the domain of the others possible actions. This new conception of power shows what was implicit in the model of the battle and war, but that still had not been coherently explained, namely, that it is necessary to presuppose the virtual 'freedom' of the forces engaged to understand the exercise of power. Power is a mode of action upon 'acting subjects,' upon 'free subjects, insofar as they are free.' ' A power relationship, on the other hand, can only be articulated on the basis of two elements that are indispensable if it is really to be a power relation; that the "other" (the one over whom power is exercised) must be recognized and maintained to the very end as a subject who acts; and that, faced with a relationship of power, a whole field of responses, reactions, effects and possible inventions may open up.' The only way that subjects can be said to be free, in keeping with he stipulations of this model, is if they 'always have the possibility to change the situation, if this possibility always exists.' This modality of the exercise of power allows Foucault to respond to the critiques addressed to him ever since he initiated his work on power: 'So what I've said does not mean that we are always trapped, but that we are always free--well, anyway, that there is always the possibility of changing.' ' States of domination,' on the contrary, are characterized by the institutional stabilization of strategic relations, by the fact that the mobility, the potential reversibility and instability of power relations, of 'actions upon actions,' is limited. The asymmetric relations within every social relation crystallize and lose the freedom, the 'fluidity' and the 'reversibility' of strategic relations. Foucault places 'governmental technologies,' that is to say, the set of practices that 'constitute, define, organize and instrumentalize the strategies that individuals in their freedom can use in dealing with each other,' between strategic relations and states of domination. For Foucault, Governmental technologies play a central role in power relations, because it is through these technologies that the opening and closing of strategic games is possible; through their exercise strategic relations become either crystallized and fixed in asymmetric institutionalized relations (states of domination), or they open up to the creation of subjectivities that escape biopolitical power in fluid and reversible relations. The ethico-political struggle takes on its full meaning at the frontier between 'strategic relations' and 'states of domination,' on the terrain of 'governmental technologies.' Ethical action, then, is concentrated upon the crux of the relation between strategic relations and governmental technologies, and it has two principal goals: 1. to permit, by providing rules and techniques to manage the relationships established with the self and with others, the interplay of strategic relations with the minimum possible domination, 2. to augment their freedom, their mobility and reversibility in the exercise of power because these are the prerequisites of resistance and creation. 6. The determination of the relationship between resistance and creation is the last limit that Foucaults thought attempted to breach. The forces that resist and create are to be found in strategic relations and in the will of subjects who are virtually free to 'control the conduct of others.' Power, the condensation of strategic relations into relations of domination, the contraction of the spaces of freedom by the desire to control the conduct of others, always meets with resistance; this resistance should be sought out in the strategic dynamic. Consequently, life and living being become a 'matter' of ethics through the dynamic that simultaneously resists power and creates new forms of life. In an interview in 1984, a year before his death, Foucault was asked about the definition of the relation between resistance and creation:

'Resistance was conceptualized only in terms of negation. Nevertheless, as you see it, resistance is not solely a negation but a creative process. To create and recreate, to transform the situation, to participate actively in the process, that is to resist.' ' Yes, that is the way I would put it. To say no is the minimum form of resistance. But naturally, at times that is very important. You have to say no as a decisive form of resistance.' And in the same interview, destined to appear in Body Politic, Foucault asserts that minorities (homosexuals), to whom the relation between resistance and creation is a matter of political survival, should not only defend themselves and resist, but should also affirm themselves, create new forms of life, create a culture; "They should affirm themselves; not merely affirm themselves in their identity, but affirm themselves insofar as they are a creative force. The relationships with ourselves, the relationships that we should entertain with ourselves, which led Foucault to this new definition of power are not relationships of identity; 'Rather they should be relationships of differentiation, of creation and innovation.' Foucaults work ought to be continued upon this fractured line between resistance and creation. Foucaults itinerary allows us to conceive the reversal of biopower into biopolitics, the 'art of governance' into the production and government of new forms of life. To establish a conceptual and political distinction between biopower and biopolitics is to move in step with Foucault's thinking. Translated by Ivan A.Ramirez - published in Pli The Warwick Journal of Philosophy

Biopolitics/Bioeconomics: a politics of multiplicity


Maurizio Lazzarato We have never understood the world of liberalism as much as during the referendum campaign. However, have these passionate debates contributed to make the logic of liberalism intelligible? According to the two courses by Michel Foucault, recently published as Security, Territory, Population and The Birth of Biopolitics, this is dubious. These books trace a genealogy and a history of liberalism and effectively present a way of reading capitalism which differs from Marxism, from political philosophy and from political economy at once. In this genealogy of liberalism, I will concentrate on the analysis of the relation between the economy and politics and on the question of labour developed by the French philosopher. The remarkable novelty introduced by Foucault in the history of capitalism since its origins, is the following: the problem that arises from the relation between politics and the economy is resolved by techniques and dispositifs that come from neither. This outside, this other must be interrogated. The functioning, the efficacy and the force of politics and the economy, as we all know today, are not derived from forms of rationality that are internal to these logics, but from a rationality that is exterior and that Foucault names the government of men. Government is a human technology that the modern State has inherited from the Christian pastoral technique (a specific technique that is absent from the Roman and Greek traditions) and liberalism has adapted it, changed it and enriched it by turning it from a government of souls into a government of men!). To govern means to ask the question of how to conduct the conduct of others. To govern is to exercise an action on possible actions. To govern means to act upon subjects who ought to be considered free. Foucault had already used government to explain the dispositifs of regulation and control of the sick, the poor, delinquents, the insane etc. Within this genealogy of liberalism, the theory of micropowers

contributes to also explaining large economic phenomena, with major innovations. Liberal macrogovernmentality is only possible because it exerts its micro-powers upon a multiplicity. These two levels are inseparable. The theory of micro-powers is a question of method, of standpoint, and not of scales (the analysis of specific populations such as the mad, the prisoner etc.). The economy and politics Why does the relation between the economy and politics become problematic in the mid C18th? Foucault explains it in this fashion. The art of government of the sovereign must be exercised within a territory and on its subjects of rights, but this space is inhabited, since the C18th, by economic subjects who have no rights but hold some interests. The figure of the homo oeconomicus is absolutely heterogeneous and non superposable, nor is it reducible to homo juridicus or homo legalis. The economic man and the subject of rights give place to two processes of constitutions that are completely heterogeneous: the subjects of right are integrated into the body of other subjects of rights by means of a dialectics of renunciation. In fact, the political constitution presupposes that the juridical subject transfers (renounces) their rights to someone else. On the other hand, the economic man is integrated into the body of other economic subjects (economic constitution) not through a transfer of rights, but through a spontaneous multiplication of interests. One does not renounce ones interest. On the contrary, it is only by persevering in ones selfish interest that there can be the multiplication and satisfaction of everyones needs. The emergence of this irreducibility of the economy to politics has given rise to an unlikely number of interpretations. The problem is clearly at the centre of Adam Smiths work, since historically and theoretically he is found at this turning point, which has for centuries been a point of reference for all commentators. For Adelino Zanini, who perhaps sums up this debate in the most complete fashion, Smith is not the founder of political economy, but the last moral philosopher who attempted to determine the reason why ethics, politics and economics no longer overlap nor constitute a coherent and harmonious whole. According to Zanini, Smith arrives at the following conclusion: the relation between the economy and politics cannot be resolved, harmonised or totalised. And he leaves the solution to this riddle for posterity, which has not really followed the path traced by the Scottish philosopher. For Hanna Arendt political economy introduces necessity, need, private interest (oikos) into public space, in other words, all those things that the classical Greek and Roman tradition had defined as nonpolitical. It is in this way that, by occupying the public sphere, the economy irreversibly deteriorates politics. According to Carl Schmitt, the logic of political economy is an element of depoliticisation and neutralisation of politics because the struggle for survival amongst enemies is turned into competition amongst business men (the bourgeoisie); the State is turned into society, and the political unity of the people into a sociological multiplicity of consumers, travellers and entrepreneurs. Whilst for Arendt the economy makes the classical tradition ineffective, for Schmitt it cripples the modern tradition of public law of the European peoples. For Marx this division between the Bourgeoisie (economic subject) and the Citizen (subject of right) is a contradiction that must be interpreted dialectically. Bourgeois and Citizen are in a relation of structure to superstructure. The reality of the relations of production is blurred by those of politics, which mystify them. The revolution is a promise of reconciliation between these two divided worlds. Foucault does not integrate any of these views and proposes completely original solutions: first of all, the relation between these different domains the political, the economic and the ethical can no longer refer to a synthesis or unity to return to, unlike in Schmitt, Arendt and Marx. Secondly, neither juridical law, nor economic theory, not the law of the market are capable of reconciling this heterogeneity. A new domain needs to be constituted, a new field, a new point of reference that is neither the totality of the subjects of rights, nor that of economic subjects. The ones and the others can only be governable in so far as a new group can be defined, which will incorporate them by making visible not only their relations and combinations, but also a whole series of other elements and interests.

In order for governmentality to preserve its global character, in order for it to not be separated in two branches (the art of economics and juridical government), liberalism invents and experiments a series of techniques (of government) which are exerted on a new level of reference that Foucault calls civil society, society or the social. But here civil society is not the space for the making of autonomy from the state, but the correlative of certain techniques of government. Civil society is not a first and immediate reality, but something that belongs to the modern technology of governmentality. Society is not a reality in itself or something that does not exist, but a reality of transactions, just like sexuality or madness. At the crossing of these relations of power and those which continue to escape them emerge some realities of transaction that constitute in a way an interface between the governing and the governed. At this junction and in the management of this interface liberalism is constituted as an art of government and biopolitics is born. Thus, according to Foucault the homo oeconomicus is not an atom of the indivisible freedom of sovereign power nor an element that can be reduced to juridical government, but rather a certain type of subject that will allow the self limitation and self regulation of an art of government according to economic principles and defined by the aim to govern as little as possible. The homo oeconomicus is the partner, the vis--vis, the basic element of the new governmental reason as it is formulated from the C18th. Liberalism is first and foremost neither an economic theory nor a political theory; it is rather an art of government that assumes the market as the test and means of intelligibility, as the truth and the measure of society. Society must be understood as the totality of juridical, economic, cultural and social relations, woven together by a multiplicity of subjects (of which classes are a part). By market we do not mean commodification. According to Foucault with the C18th we do not return to the first book of Capital, with alienation and the reification of human relations determined by commodity exchange etc. So the market is not defined by the human instinct to exchange. It is no longer the market Braudel speaks of, which as such can never be reducible to capitalism. According to Foucault, by market we must always understand competition and inequality, rather than equality of exchange. Here, the subjects are not merchants but entrepreneurs. The market is therefore the market of enterprises and of their differential and non-egalitarian logic. Liberalism as the government of heterogeneous dispositifs of power Foucault explains the mode of functioning of governmental rationality in an equally original way. It does not function according to the opposition of public regulation (State) and the freedom of the entrepreneurial individual, but according to a strategic logic. The juridical, economic and social dispositifs are not contradictory, they are heterogeneous. For Foucault heterogeneity means tensions, frictions, and mutual incompatibilities, successful or unsuccessful adjustments between these different dispositifs. Sometimes the government plays one dispositif against another; sometimes it relies on one, sometimes on the other. We are confronted with a kind of pragmatism that always uses the market and competition as a measure of its strategies. The logic of liberalism does not aim to take over, in a reconciled totality, the different conceptions of law, freedom, right and the processes that the juridical, economic and social dispositifs imply. According to Foucault, the logic of liberalism is opposed to the logic of dialectics. The latter considers contradictory terms in a homogeneous element that promises their resolution in a reconciliation. The function of the strategic logic is to establish the possible connections between disparate terms that remain disparate. Foucault describes a politics of multiplicity that is well opposed to the primacy of politics defended by Arendt and Schmitt, and to the primacy of the economy of Marx. Foucault substitutes the proliferation of devices that constitute substantial unities, as much as degrees of unities contingent in each instance, for the totalising principle of the economy or the political. For the majoritarian subjects (subjects of rights, the working class etc.) he substitutes minoritarian subjects that operate and constitute the real by the enactment and the addition of bits, pieces, parts each time singular. The truth of these parts and these bits and pieces cannot be found in the political or the economic

whole. Through the market and society the art of government is deployed with an increasing capacity of intervention, intelligibility and organisation of the whole of juridical, economic and social relations from the standpoint of the entrepreneurial logic. Populations/Classes Government is always exercised on a multiplicity that Foucault names, in the language of political economy, population. According to Foucault, government as the global management of power has always had the multitude as its object, of which classes (economic subjects), the subjects of right, and social subjects are parts. In the analysis of capitalism a line of discrimination is drawn between those techniques and knowledges (savoir) that take as their object the multiplicity-population and those which focus on the classes. According to Foucault, since the beginning of capitalism, the problem of population has been conceived of as a bio-economic problem, until Marx tried to confine the problem of population (of the multitude, in the language of power) and to evade the very notion of population, in order to find again its proper form, no longer bio-economic, but the historical and political confrontation of classes and class struggle. (1) The population must be grasped in a double aspect. On one side lies the human species and its biological, economic and social conditions of reproduction (regulation of birth and mortality, the management of demography, risks linked to life etc.), but on the other there lies the Public and public opinion. As the French philosopher notes, economists and marketing agents emerge at the same time. From the C18th the object of government is to act on the economy and on Opinion. Thus the action of government extends from the socio-biological rooting of the species as far as the surface of capture offered by the public, as dispositifs of power and not as ideological State apparatuses. From the species to the public, there is a whole field of new realities and new ways of acting on behaviours, opinions, and subjectivities in order to change the ways economic and political subjects say and do things. Discipline and security We still have a disciplinary vision of capitalism, whereas according to Foucault those that take precedence are the dispositifs of security. The tendency that affirms itself in Western societies and that comes from a long time ago, from Polizeiwissenschaft, is that of the society of security that incorporates, uses, exploits and perfects the dispositifs of discipline and sovereignty without suppressing them, following a strategic logic of heterogeneity that we talked about above. We have sketched out the difference between discipline and security. Discipline confines, fixes limits and borders, so that security safeguards and ensures circulation. The former prevents whilst the latter leaves it to make, incites, favours, and solicits. The former limits freedom, the latter fabricates and produces it (freedom of enterprise or of the individual entrepreneur). Discipline is centripetal, it concentrates, centres and confines; the latter is centrifugal, it widens and continuously integrates new elements to the art of government. There is the example of a disease. A disease can be treated in a disciplinary way or according to the logic of security. In the first case (that of leprosy) measures are taken to try and prevent contagion by separating the diseased from the non diseased, confining and isolating the former. In the second case dispositifs of security support new techniques and new knowledges (vaccination) and aim to take into account the whole of the population without discontinuity or ruptures and separations between the diseased and the non diseased. Through statistics (another indispensable knowledge for security devices) a differential cartography of normality can be designed by calculating the risk of contagion for each age group, profession, city, and in every city for each neighbourhood etc. Thus there can even be a table with different curves of normality starting from the location of risks. The technique of security

consists in the attempt put a lid on the most unfavourable curves, the ones that deviate the most from the most normal curve. Thus there are two techniques that produce two different types of normalisation. Discipline arranges the elements on the basis of a code, a model and norms that determine what is forbidden and what is allowed, what is normal and what is abnormal. Security is a differential management of normalities and risks that are regarded as neither good nor bad, but as natural and spontaneous phenomena. It designs a cartography of this distribution and the normalising operation consists of playing one differential of normality against another. The moment sovereignty capitalises a territory and discipline creates architecture for a space where the essential problem is the hierarchical and functional distribution of the elements, security starts managing a field according to the events or the series of possible events, series that it needs to regulate within a multivalent and transformable frame. Security intervenes in possible events rather than facts. It therefore refers to what is aleatory, temporal and in course of development. Finally, security, unlike discipline, is a science of details. To adapt a citation from Security, territory and population, we could say that the things that concern security are those of each instant, whilst what concern the law are definitive and permanent things. Security is concerned with small things, whilst the law deals with the important issues. Security is always concerned with the details. Vitalpolitik Foucault makes relative the spontaneous ontological power of the enterprise, the market and labour and the constitutive force of majoritarian subjects (entrepreneurs and workers). Instead of making the sources of the production of wealth (and of the production of the real) in a mirroring fashion as Marxists and political economy have done, he shows how they are rather the results of the action of a group of dispositifs that activate, solicit and invest society. Enterprises, the market and labour are not spontaneous powers, but rather constitute what liberal government must make possible and real. The market, for instance, is an economic and social general regulator, yet it is not a natural mechanism found at the foundation of society, as Marxists and classical liberals had thought. On the contrary, the mechanisms of the market (prices, laws of demand and supply) are fragile. Favourable conditions must be continuously created for these fragile mechanisms to function. Governmentality assumes the market is the limit of state intervention: this is not in order to neutralise its interventions, but rather to requalify them. The relation between the State and the market is clarified by the theory and practice of German Ordo-liberals. In fact, liberal interventions can be as numerous as Keynesian ones (The freedom of the market needs an active and extremely vigilant politics), but their aims and objects are different. The goal of these interventions is the very possibility of the market. The objective is to make competition, the action of prices and the calculation of supply and demand possible. As the Ordo liberals say, intervention not on the market, but for the market. There is no need to intervene in the market since the measure of interventions is the principle of intelligibility, the place of veridiction. What needs intervention then? According to the German liberals action must not be taken on what is directly economic, but on the conditions that make market economy possible. The government must intervene on society itself in its web and thickness. The politics of society, as they call it, has to take charge and account for social processes, and within them make room for the market mechanism. In order for the market to be possible, the general framework must be acted upon: demography, techniques, property rights, social and cultural conditions, education, juridical regulations etc. The economic theory of liberals manages to conceive of a politics of life (Vitalpolitik) in order to allow the market to exist: A politics of life is not essentially oriented, as traditional social politics, towards the augmentation of wages and the reduction of labour time; rather, it becomes aware of the life situation of the totality of workers, its real, concrete situation, from morning to evening to morning. It looks like the Third Way of Tony Blair is more inspired by this continental liberalism than American neo-liberalism.

Work and workers The need to move outside the market is accompanied by that of moving outside of labour in order to seize its power (puissance). And to move to the outside implies moving through society and life. To make labour possible, liberal government must invest in the workers subjectivity, that is to say, their choices and decisions. As the economy becomes the economy of conduct, the economy of the souls, the first definition of government by the fathers of the Church becomes actuality again! The American neo-liberals address a paradoxical critique to classical political economy, especially to Smith and Ricardo: political economy has always pointed out that production depends on three main factors (land, capital and labour), but in these theories labour always remains unexplored. On the contrary, says Foucault, it could be said that Adam Smiths economics begins with a reflection on labour, in so far as the latter is the key to economic analysis, but classical political economy has never analysed labour in itself, or rather it has been employed to neutralise it constantly and to neutralise it by exclusively folding back on the time factor. Labour is a factor in production, but at the same time it is passive in itself and only finds employment and activity thanks to a rate of investment. Foucault widens the critique and asserts that it could also be applied to Marxian theory. Why have both classical economists and Marx paradoxically neutralised labour? Because their economic analysis limits itself to the study of the mechanisms of production, exchange and consumption and thus glides over the qualitative modulations of labourers, their choices, behaviour and decisions. Neo-liberals, on the other hand, want to study labour as an economic conduct that operates, is rationalised and calculated by those who work. This is the theory of human capital, elaborated between the 1960s and 1970s, and Foucault uses it to illustrate this passage and deepening of the logic of government. From the standpoint of the worker, wages are not the sale price of his labour power but his income. An income of what? Of its capital, that is to say a human capital that cannot be separated from its bearer, a capital that is one and the same as the worker. From the standpoint of the worker, the problem is the growth, accumulation and amelioration of his/her human capital. What does it mean, to form and better capital? To make and manage investments in school education, in health, mobility, affects and relations of all sorts (marriage for instance). In reality we are not seeing the worker through the classical lenses of the term (Marx), since the problem is to manage ones life time rather than ones labour time. And that starts from birth, since these future performances also depend on the quantity of affect that is given to the worker by relatives, capitalised by income for him or her and in psychic income for the relatives. In order to turn a worker into an entrepreneur and an investor, one needs to step to the exterior of labour. Cultural, social, educative policies define the wide and moving framework within which choosing individuals evolve. And choices, decisions, conducts and behaviours are events and series of events that must be precisely regulated by the dispositifs of security. There is a shift from the analysis of structure to the analysis of the individual, from the analysis of economic processes to an analysis of subjectivity, its choices and the conditions of production of its life. Which system of rationality should this activity of choice obey to? To the laws of the market, the model of supply and demand, the model of costs/investment that are generalised to the social body in its totality, to turn them into a model of social relations, a model of existence itself, a relation of the individual to him/herself, to time, surroundings, the future, groups, the family, which means that economics is the study of the manner in which rare resources are allocated to alternative aims. Contrary to the opinion of Polany and the Regulation School, the regulation of the market is not a corrective to its disordered development; it is its institution. Why this reversing of such a standpoint? Because what needs to be taken into account is something relatively neglected by economics: the problem of innovation. If there is innovation, if something is created anew, when new forms of

productivity are discovered, this is nothing other than the result of a whole of investments that have been made at the level of man himself. A politics of growth cannot simply point to the problem of material investment, of physical capital on the one hand, and of the number of workers multiplied by the hours of labour on the other. What needs to be changed is the level of content of human capital and to act on this capital a whole series of dispositifs are needed, to mobilise, solicit, incite and invest life. Foucault redefines Biopolitics as a politics of society and not only as a regulation of the race (Agamben), where the heterogeneity of dispositifs intervene on the totality of conditions for life, aiming to constitute subjectivity through a soliciting of choices and individual decisions. It is in this sense that power is an action on possible actions, an intervention in events. There is an image of the ideas or the theme-programme of a society where the optimisation of systems of difference reigns, within which the field for oscillating processes is left open, where there is an agreed tolerance granted to individuals and to minoritarian practices, and an action not on the players, but on the rules of the game and finally in which there will be an intervention that is not of the kind of internal subjugation of individuals, but an intervention of the environmental kind. The dispositifs of security define a frame that is loose (since it deals precisely with actions on possibilities); within this frame, on the one hand the individual will be able to exercise its free choices on the possibilities determined by others and, on the other hand, there will be enough scope for the government and handling of responses to the hazards of the changes of its environment, as required by the situation of permanent innovation of our societies. After reading these two courses we could think that Foucault has a certain fascination for liberalism. In fact, it seems that what interests him in liberalism is a politics of multiplicity; the management of power as a management of multiplicity. These telluric texts, where the functioning of Foucaults cerebral circuits is visible, seem to invite us to not consider power as something that is, but as something that makes itself (and also unmakes itself!). What exists is not power, but power in the course of its making, in direct contact with events, through a multiplicity of dispositifs, actions, laws and decision that do not make up a rational and preconceived project (a plan), yet can make up a system, a totality; a system and a totality that are always contingent. Whilst the French philosopher has long been, in his most interesting developments, a philosopher of multiplicity, French politics has also long been a politics of totality, of the one, of unity. Here the French Right and the Left (Marxist and socialist) are reunited. We have had a further confirmation of this during the referendum campaign on Europe. Not only the results themselves, the Right and the Left have immediately withdrawn in the all reassuring totality of the Nation, where they had never exited, but they appealed, the same evening, to another whole, as ineffective as reassuring, to resolve the problem of unemployment: labour/employment. The politics of totality knows no outside. The impotence of the advocates of the yes and of the no refers to a real impossibility: that of thinking and practicing a politics of multiplicity that passes through the exterior of all the substantial wholes: labour, market, State and Nation. Translated by Arianna Bove and Erik Empson

(1) Translators note: In his 1976 course to the College de France, Il faut dfendre la socit , Michel Foucault compares the philosophical and juridical discourse on sovereignty - the foundation of the political theory of a universal rights bearing subject with the historical political discourse on politics as war, characterised by an ensuing perspectivism, where truth functions as a weapon to be used for a partisan victory (p. 270) and concerned with the ever-present war in society that lies underneath and outside of political institutions. Of the latter discourse, he says that although this discourse speaks of races, and although the term race appears at a very early stage, it is quite obvious that the word race itself is not pinned to a

stable biological meaning. And yet the word is not completely free-floating. Ultimately, it designates a certain historico-political divide. One might say and this discourse does say- that two races exist whenever one writes the history of two groups which do not, at least to begin with, have the same language or, in many cases, the same religion. The two groups form a unity and a single polity only as a result of war, invasions, victories and defeats, or in other words, acts of violence. [] The revolutionary discourse of C17th England, and that of C19th France and Europe, was on the side of history-as-demand, or history-as-insurrection. []" In this context, Lazzarato is referring to a passage where Foucault quotes Marx: "After all, it should not be forgotten that toward the end of his life, Marx told Engels in a letter written in 1882 that: 'You know very well where we found our idea of class struggle; we found it in work of the French historians who talked about race struggles'. The history of the revolutionary project and of revolutionary practice is, I think, indissociable from the counter history that broke with the Indo-European form of historical practices, which were bound up with the exercise of sovereignty; it is indissociable from the appearance of the counter history of races and the role played in the West by clashes between races (M. Foucault, Society must be defended , London: Penguin 2003, p. 76-79)