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Synopsis

In this work, originally released in 1983, Barry Smart examines the relevance of Foucault's work for developing an understanding of those issues which lie beyond the limits of Marxist theory and analysis - issues such as 'individualising' forms of power, power-knowledge relations, the rise of 'the social', and the associated socialisation of politics. He argues that there exist clear and substantial differences between Foucault's genealogical analysis and that of Marxist theory. Smart thus presents Foucault's work as a new form of critical theory, whose object is a critical analysis of rationalities, and of how relations of power are rationalised.

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