Powers of Freedom: Reframing Political Thought

Cambridge University Press (1999)
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Abstract

Powers of Freedom, first published in 1999, offers a compelling approach to the analysis of political power which extends Foucault's hypotheses on governmentality in challenging ways. Nikolas Rose sets out the key characteristics of this approach to political power and analyses the government of conduct. He analyses the role of expertise, the politics of numbers, technologies of economic management and the political uses of space. He illuminates the relation of this approach to contemporary theories of 'risk society' and 'the sociology of governance'. He argues that freedom is not the opposite of government but one of its key inventions and most significant resources. He also seeks some rapprochement between analyses of government and the concerns of critical sociology, cultural studies and Marxism, to establish a basis for the critique of power and its exercise. The book will be of interest to students and scholars in political theory, sociology, social policy and cultural studies.

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