Characteristics Of Michel Foucault's 'The Magic Toyshop'
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Angela Carter’s novel, The Magic Toyshop, is filled with traits that resemble Michel Foucault’s philosophical work, Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison, even if Carter’s work does predate Foucault’s work. Uncle Philip, the antagonist, is able to monitor the members of his household without even being present in the house. He has made his wife completely subservient to him. Uncle Philip even extends his power to control relationships. Similarly, Margaret Atwood’s work, The Handmaid’s Tale, portrays some Foucauldian ideologies. Atwood published her novel after Foucault published Discipline and Punish, which is reason to believe she was influenced by his philosophies. In Atwood’s novel, she incorporated Foucauldian ideologies that have been implemented by a totalitarian, theocratic regime that is able to make its population more machine than human. The society wants to make their monitoring flawless by using spies. Since the Republic and Gilead forcibly converted their population, they forbid them to leave.
In Discipline and Punish: The Birth of the Prison, Michel Foucault includes theories in which to control and surveillance individuals. He describes his theory that he referred to as “docile bodies” to control a person. “A body is docile that may be subjected, used, transformed, and improved.” (Foucault 136) “A body” suggests the mind is absent in the body, which appears to be a process similar to brainwashing. Foucault states that the body can be used “as object