Chapter 7: Michel Foucault: How Power Affects Our View of Truth Michel Foucault

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Applying Foucault

We might ask, in response to Foucault, “How do our perspectives, situatedness and power affect our view of reality?” It is likely that it affects us very much. So what might Applications could we make of his insights?

First, we might try to see how that our situatedness affects our ability to see reality from other peoples perspectives. How has my place of privilege and power blinded me from injustices in society? If I am born into a white upper class suburban home, I likely do not really understand what life is like in the inner city. If I am born in the United States, I likely to not have a good understanding of how very privileged my life is, compared to kids born in third world countries. I also may wonder if my worldview forgets about those different than myself, whether they are the other gender, race, culture, political group, or theological perspective. If I have nothing but spite for Calvinists, or Democrats, or women, or Hispanics, then it is likely that I have some biases which need to be overcome. Its not that I cannot have a position which I think is correct—I can! But I need to be attentive to the way in which my background and power play a role in how I construe reality.

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