Similarities Between Michel Foucault 's Punish And Discipline And Nellie Bly 's Ten Days

1495 Words Mar 17th, 2016 6 Pages
The beginning of this essay will reference the judge’s traditional duty. Next it will explore the similarities between Michel Foucault’s Punish and Discipline and Nellie Bly’s Ten Days in a Madhouse. More specifically, it will address the increased authority of the judge, and the judge as a normalizing figure in society. After, it will compare Foucault’s definition of disciplinary institutions to Nellie Bly’s experience in Blackwell Insane Asylum.
The judge exercised unilateral power in the justice system; his temperament, punctuality, knowledge and authority remained unchecked. He investigated suspects, formed judgment and prescribed punishment (Foucault 19). In particular, an investigation established the suspect’s involvement in an act. The judge studied its results and diagnosed guilt. Then he prosecuted according to the law (Foucault 19). Although he controlled the justice system, the judge lacked authority in alternative areas of society. His influence remained unchanged until the late 19th century.
Nellie Bly exposes the judge’s increased influence in late 19th century society. In the beginning of Chapter 1, she explores the possible roadways to Blackwell Insane Asylum; she can feign insanity at a friend’s house, recruit doctors sympathetic to her cause, or go by way of the police courts (Bly 2). Like an electric charge, Bly chooses the efficient route, the police court route (Bly 2). Although she intentionally chooses this road, it is hazardous. If she committed a…
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