Michel Foucault’s “History of Sexuality” is an undertaking in nullification of the was a regulated and polymorphous incitement to discourse (Foucault, ). Incitement to Discourse. In , Foucault asked “how is it that in a society like ours, sexuality is not simply a means of reproducing the species. In Michel Foucault’s “The Incitement to Discourse”, the development of sex as discourse within our society is illustrated beginning in the 17th.

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During the nineteenth century Western civilizations developed a scientia sexualis the goal of which was to produce true discourses on sex.

Sex has been the central theme of confession from the Christian penance to the psychiatrist’s couch.

Foucault on Discourses Concerning Sex

Michel Foucault’s “History of Sexuality” is an undertaking in nullification of the notion that Western society has experienced a repression of sexuality since the seventeenth century. Societies such as China, Japan, India, Rome and the Arabo-Muslim societies granted to themselves the ars erotica, and from this erotic art, truth is drawn from the pleasure in itself.

He states that the desire to speak about the repressed nature of sex participated in the very structure that it was seeking to decipher Bristow, His final question asks, does the critical discourse that addresses itself to repression act as a block to the power mechanism that has operated unchallenged to this point or is it in fact a part of the same thing that it denounces and misrepresents by calling it ‘repression’?

Further to this he dispels the idea that sexuality has not been the subject of open discourse. Foucault informs us that historically there have been two main procedures for producing the truth of sex.

Is what first appears to our view really the accentuation or establishment of a regime of sexual repression beginning in the seventeenth century? Foucault argues further by suggesting that it is peculiar to modern societies not to consign sex to a shadowy existence but to speak about it ad infinitum whilst at the same time exploiting it as the secret.

The dominant agency does not reside within the constraint of the person who speaks but rather within the one who listens and says nothing; neither does it reside within the one who knows and answers but within the one who questions and is not supposed to know. This only proliferated these sinful thoughts as people would constantly focus on not having sexual ideas that they occurred more and more.


The practice is understood and experienced while pleasure is not defined in relation to the permitted or the forbidden. This society conceived a new type of pleasure as it endeavoured to create the homogeneous truth concerning sex: In conclusion, attempts to restrain or hide sex led to the creation of a constant air of sexuality in our actions and thoughts that we now experience today. Was there really a rupture between the age of repression and the critical analysis of repression?

The confession has spread its effects far and wide; we confess our crimes, our sins, our thoughts and our desires. Indeed to construct a knowledge of the individual the object of the investigation has become to uncover the truth of sex fpucault to reveal its assumed hidden secret.

What knowledge savoir was formed as a result of this linkage? Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. Your email address will not be published. The possibility exists that sexual discourses merely served to provide a foundation for imperatives aimed at the eradication of ‘unproductive’ forms foucauot sexuality.

The increasing frequency of sexual thoughts caused the single discourse of sex to develop into multiple discourses.

Use of Silence in Foucault’s “The Incitement to Discourse”

What were the effects of power generated by what was said? This occurred as sex became increasingly an object of administration and management through government inquiry. Talking about sex became allowed in certain instances and not in others.

This entry was posted in Section According to Smartp96Foucault stated that as the seventeenth century drew to a close. He did this incitemennt show that others were not alone in their desires as people were able to connect with and identify with the book.

Males and females were separated in school to prevent sexual interactions and the setups of schools were done to limit the sexuality of children. dicsourse

What are the links between these discourses, these effects of power, and the pleasures that were invested by them? Sex became our privileged locus or secret of our being – our truth, and the pursuit is now for fooucault ‘truth of sex’ and the ‘truth in sex’ Smart, Your email address will not be published. The end result of this ritual produces fundamental changes in the person who expresses diecourse as it exonerates and liberates him with the promise of salvation.


Here, Foucault suggests a sense of innocence or normalcy for the man by choosing to explain how this act was something that was not tto routine for him, but also for those around him.

The immense extortion of the sexual confession came to be constituted in scientific terms in the following ways; a clinical codification of the fojcault to speak, the postulate of a general and diffuse causality, the principle of a latency intrinsic to sexuality, the method of interpretation, the medicalisation of the effects of disdourse Foucault,pp Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published.

Firstly, is sexual repression an established historical fact? Foucault has rationalized that contrary to the opinion that the society of the nineteenth century had little dialogue relating to sex, that they did in fact put into operation an entire machinery for producing true discourses about it.

Proudly powered by WordPress. Seemingly insignificant details regarding sex including bedtimes and the shapes of tables diiscourse heavily monitored as a result of administrators acknowledging the presence of sexuality within children.

Proudly powered by WordPress. In that manner, sex became confined to the privacy of the home and the procreative couple and at the same time it became an enmeshment of a web of disxourse and forms of analysis between the state and individuals Smart, Our society has broken with the tradition of ars erotica and bestowed upon itself a scientia sexualis by adapting the ancient procedure of the confession to the rules of scientific discourse.

The purpose of this paper is an attempt to explain, through the fokcault of Foucault, that modern society has implemented the mechanisms necessary for generating true discourses relating to sex.