Michael Hardt: On Deleuze’s Theory of Control

Southern Nights

Michael Hardt in an essay on Deleuze’s Postscript for Societies of Control published in Discourse Journal for Theoretical Studies in Media and Culture aligns his notion of Empire contra Foucault’s ‘regimes of biopower’ saying: “I would like to suggest that the social form of this new Empire we are living today is the global society of control” (140). I’ve written on Deleuze’s essay before: here, so will not go back over the details (and one can read it the full essay by Deleuze: here).

Hardt in furthering Deleuze’s initiative sees the change from the Foucauldian  disciplinary society to the society of control as a breakdown in the outside/inside distinctions in conceptions of sovereignty and power over time as manifest in the concept of territory. As he tells it the older forms of sovereignty were always measured in concepts of territory and of the relations of territory to some outside:…

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