Colonial Subjectification: Foucault, Christianity and Governmentality

Christina Petterson


Abstract

Foucault’s concept of pastoral power is envisioned as a technique of power developed from the medieval period and carried through into modern political rationalities. As such, it is an old power technique – which originated in Christian institutions – in a new political shape, which he coined governmentality. This article uses Foucault’s genealogy of pastoral power and governmentality to discuss the intersection of domination and technology of self in the Greenlandic colonial context and to bring out the central role of religion in Foucault’s conceptualisation of governmentality.

Keywords

Governmentality; pastoral power; Greenland; colonialism; subjectification

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