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Document Details :
Title: De protestantse ethiek en de geest van de gouvernementaliteit
Subtitle: Een ongeschreven hoofdstuk uit Foucaults genealogie van de moderne staat
Author(s): BRAECKMAN, Antoon
Journal: Tijdschrift voor Filosofie
Volume: 83 Issue: 3 Date: 2021
Foucault proposes that governmentality is, in many respects, the heir of pastoral power. Yet he did not conclusively demonstrate the genealogical link between pastoral power and governmentality. This article argues that the ‘missing link’ in this genealogy can be found in the governmental transformations that took place in the period of the Reformation and Counter-Reformation, more specifically in the period of the ‘confessionalization’. To substantiate this claim, I briefly discuss the ideal-typical relationship between pastoral power and governmentality while indicating how Foucault accounts for this relationship. I then criticize his account by showing that it fails to expose the genealogical link between pastoral power and governmentality. Finally, I show how, from a genealogical point of view, the confessionalization theory makes a convincing connection between the revival of pastoral power during the Reformation and the development of a ‘confessional governmentality’ in which religious and secular authorities intersect.