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on 9 November 2017
Fast postage. Great item.
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on 27 November 2017
v good
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on 4 January 2015
What else is there to say about this trailblazing work that has not already been said? An immensely theoretically complex work crammed into relatively few pages, Foucault moves on from his thesis in 'Discipline and Punish', wherein he introduced the notion of disciplinary power. In 'HoS Vol 1', Foucault further develops the concept of biopower, constituted by two poles - discipline, directed at the individual body, and biopolitics, directed at the population. He further develops the concepts introduced in 'Abnormal' and 'Society Must Be Defended', and the final chapter (The Right to Death and the Power Over Life) is particularly mind-blowing. He argues that although biopower seeks to invest in life and incite to live, wars have never been more murderous and bloody than in the contemporary era of biopower. The paradoxical situation is brought about as although wars were previously conducted in the name of the sovereign, contemporary wars are conducted in the name of genetic hygiene, in the name of race - and that the elimination of the 'Other' is thought to make the Self stronger. In other words, wars have become genocidal.

A fantastic work that must be read for anyone seriously confronting the topic of power.
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on 5 October 2014
This book was originally published in French in 1976, and rapidly translated in English in 1978, which in itself gives a good indication of the cultural impact of French philosopher Michel Foucault on contemporary thought and scholarship.

It might prove difficult to read at times as the translation is quite close to the original French text.

It is a very dense text, with lots of ideas, and also Foucault trying his best to reinforce his line of argument with imagining contradictory points of view and refuting these in turn along the line of argument.

Part One: We "Other Victorians" 1

Part Two: The Repressive Hypothesis 15
Chapter 1: The Incitement to Discourse 17
Chapter 2: The Perverse Implantation 36

Part Three: Scientia Sexualis 51

Part Four: The Deployment of Sexuality 75
Chapter 1: Objective 81
Chapter 2: Method 92
Chapter 3: Domain 103
Chapter 4: Periodization 115

Part Five: Right of Death and Power over Life 133

Index 161
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on 21 April 2012
First published in 1976, this is the first volume of Foucault's great analysis and theorisation of `sexuality', a concept, he argues, which emerges in the nineteenth century.

With his characteristic iconoclasm, his verbal and mental fireworks, Foucault forges links between power, knowledge and sexuality, tying them together through analyses of discourse and its functionality.

Taking his starting point as the so-called `repression' of the Victorians, he shows how rather than being silenced about sex, Victorian culture centralised it, creating a science of sex (Freud, Krafft-Ebbing, Charcot) that supported ideologies which were economically useful to and supportive of capitalism, and which were essentially conservative.

Of course, being Foucault, these are never going to be straightforward, uncomplicated or transparent arguments. So don't read this if you want to passively agree with what you're being told - Foucault is deliberately combative, striving to stimulate us into arguing back to refine his insights but also to build on them - as scholars have been doing since the 1970s.

So this may be dense, sometimes frustrating, sometimes, even, a bit bonkers - but for all that, it's still central to the way in which we construct, analyse and deconstruct ideas of the politics of sex and sexuality today.
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on 26 June 2000
This, the first volume of French philosopher Michel Foucault's tripartite study of sexuality is as idiosyncratic as the man himself. Unlike the works of a number of his colleages, this book is highly accessible and of interest to any broadminded reader, although it would be of particular interest to students of philosophy, sociology, gender, politics, religion, history etc etc.. I personally have recommended H.O.S.1 to a number of friends and have yet to receive a negative response. While more of an intellectual curiosity than a full blown philosophy, Foucault's concepts reverberate far beyond the parameters of the book's subject.
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on 9 February 2001
Readable and digestable is very much what can characterise the style of the book. In content, Foucault explores the creation of sexual categories and their relevance to the power structures of the capitalist society. It is a clear treatise on sexual fascism and how it is used to the ends of the power structure. Inherent within the book, and it is this which makes it different from other attempts, is the manner in which Foucault views the conditioning of sexuality as part of our Western scientific tradition. In certain respects, he is unscathed by that same tradition in the way he comments on sexuality and its deployment as a tool for power. In this way, the book does not reflect a critique of the capitalist economy more than a realisation of the way power is ingrained within the structures of the political economy and the psyche of the people.
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on 20 August 2017
Foucault has a way of wording things that makes him seem pretentious and hard to get your head around. It's been suggested to me that he is speaking ironically although that didn't make reading it any easier. I'd be extremely shocked if anyone bought this to read for fun and not for academic purposes.

I did have a hiccup in that Royal Mail lost my book, however, the 3rd party seller sent me a replacement first class after I explained that I needed the book for my university reading list very soon and I was very grateful for their amazing customer service.
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on 25 March 2017
Really good book, gave me the information I needed for my assignment.
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on 25 July 2015
Thanks
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