Risk and Civicness Discourses as Educational Practices of Constituting the “Entrepreneur of Oneself”

Author: Helena Ostrowicka
Institution: Kazimierz Wielki University in Bydgoszcz
Year of publication: 2012
Source: Show
Pages: 5-20
DOI Address: https://doi.org/10.15804/kie.2012.06.01
PDF: kie/92/kie9201.pdf

This paper is a continuation of my reflection upon “neo-liberal entanglements of education” and an attempt to interpret Michel Foucault’s works with respect to selected aspects of youth policy in Poland. My focus here is on the relations between the issues of government and morality. I will begin with a brief examination of Foucault’s views on government and governmentality, pointing out some trains of thought that will be developed in the further sections. In what follows, I will present an attempt at the risk discourse analysis, focusing my attention on the regimes of truth employed in youth policy. Discussing the political and economic potential of realized risk used by the neo-liberal program, I will refer to some specific ideas of “technologies of the self” – from the Greek principle of care for oneself; then, the idea of getting to know oneself to the modern ethics of investing in oneself. Finally, referring to Foucault’s findings, I will place neo-liberal techniques within the context of two regimes: the discourse of threat (risk) and the discourse of civicness. I will examine how the production of the “threat” and “civicness” as educational practices of constituting of the self takes place within these regimes.


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civicness discourse risk discourse entrepreneur of oneself youth policy governmentality

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