American Power: Mary Parker Follett and Michel Foucault

Scott L. Pratt

Abstract


Classical pragmatism, despite its recognized concern for questions of freedom and democracy, has little to say directly about questions of power. Some commentators have found Dewey’s notion of habit to be a resource for taking up issues of power while others have argued that pragmatism does not provide a sufficiently critical tool to challenge systematic oppression. Still others have proposed to shore up pragmatism by using resources found in post-structuralism, particularly in the work of Foucault. This paper begins with this suggestion, but argues that while Foucault offers a useful starting point his conception of power fails—at least in an American context characterized by the experience of pluralism. I then argue that the pragmatist tradition, through the work of Mary P. Follett (1868-1933) has the theoretical resources to generate a conception of power that begins with the experience of pluralism.

Full Text:

PDF


DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.22439/fs.v0i11.3207



Copyright (c) 2011 Scott L. Pratt

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

visitors since Feb 2009. Hosted by CBS Library