SLIDE 1New Historicism can be simply defined as thestructuralist realization that all human systems are symbolic and subject to the rules of language 6deconstructive realization that there is no way of positioning oneself as an observer outside the closed circle of textuality 6SLIDE 2There are four terms in New Historicism: 2 people and 2 terms and I’ll be doing Michel Foucault and episteme.Michel Foucault was a French philosopher, historian of ideas, social theorist, and literary critic. He was born in Poitiers France in 1926 and died in 1984. He was a major figure in the structuralist wave of the 1960’s and after that, a major figure in the post-structuralist wave. He was also a homosexual hedonist, and sought to redefine sexuality. He also challenged many other paradigms of his days. The defining aspect of Michel Foucault was that he was an explorer because rather than just building up a coherent body of fixed knowledge, he loved to challenge and he left things open rather than rebuilding that which he had taken apart. You can say that fixedness and certainty for him were as red rags to a bull 14Foucault’s work can generally be characterized as philosophically oriented historical research since towards the end of his life, he insisted that all of his work was part of a single project of historically investigating the production of truth. 14As a result, he was one of the most prominent living intellectual in France. SLIDE 3″Episteme” is a philosophical term derived from the Ancient Greek word ????????, which can refer to knowledge, science or understanding, and which comes from the verb ?????????, meaning “to know, to understand, or to be acquainted with”. Episteme can be contrasted with “doxa”: common belief or opinion since in general, it is portrayed as more of a justified or true belief because if doxa is the foundation, episteme is the steel beam that makes up the framework since episteme goes beyond basic reasoning skills to come to a conclusion and reveals the actual process that lead to the conclusion. 3Episteme can also be distinguished from “techne”: a craft or applied practice. I chose Michel Foucault and episteme because they are both connected in a way. Michel Foucault was an epistemologist and in his book called “The Order of Things” published in 1966, Foucault referenced three epistemes:The episteme of the Renaissance, which is characterized by resemblance and similitudeThe classical episteme characterized by representation, ordering, identity etcThe third and the most important in the analysis of V for Vendetta which he describes as a system of understanding/body of ideas which give shape to the knowledge of that time and he further says it is a search that leads one away from the crowd and the multitude. He is also known to say that there is a connection between structures of power and structures of knowledge because in his theory he argued that modern society is a “disciplinary society,” meaning that power in our time is largely exercised through disciplinary means and rational practices in a variety of institutions (prisons, schools, hospitals, militaries, etc.) and he also Focused on the relationship between power and knowledge and how they’re used as a form of social control through societal institutions. 134That’s why one can say that his episteme is very similar to Thomas Kuhn’s idea of unchallengeable paradigmsANALYSISIn general, we all can agree that this movie was made to cause people to imagine how terrible a totalitarian and a dystopian Britain would beIn relation to episteme, we all know that Government’s body of ideas suggested that being a homosexual or/and an undesirable- muslim, terrorist, deceased, immigrants etc. was not acceptable which gave shape to the KNOWLEDGE that they are not fit to live should be punished using POWER through societal institutions such as prisons and camps such a the Larkhill Institution camp in the movie. This also connects with the theory of Michel Foucault because Sutler did all of the things- executed people and did biological experiments on people in the camps who were homosexuals such as Valarie- who was a lesbian, Gordon Deitrich- who had a Quran and homosexual images in his house and other innocents and also spreding the epidemic of the St. Mary’s virus which demonstrates the use of power to maintain his fear among English citizens and gain societal control which also proves his theory about the modern society being a “disciplinary” society because of the involvement of concentration camps- societal institution. Another thing is that V solitarily attempts to destroy the parliament and the totalitarian regime which connects to episteme again because it is not a doxa for him that this government is bad coz we know that he himself went through that torture- those biological experiments and as a result, he started revolting and he did it all by himself- at least before Evey joined him which connects to Foucault’s definition of episteme that it leads one away from the crowd since people were a little suspicious about him in the beginning of the film.The last thing is that I wanna mention is that in the beginning we discussed that New Historicism means to interpret text with context of both the history of the author and critic. So if we go back to the first connection we see homosexuals involved and as I mentioned earlier, the critic- Foucault was a homosexual hedonist so we can interpret that he would had definitely noticed this and the author of the original comic- Alan Moore was noted to say that his comic of a totalitarian England was inspired by the novel “1984” and that’s why it can help to interpret that this might be the reason why he chose a single person to be the active rebel like Winston- in this case V and then someone like Julia- in this case Evey to join him afterwards and maybe that’s why he chose someone like Big Brother in a telescreen- in this case Sutler and also maybe that’s why his novel was set in future compared to when it was written
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- There cost of compliance is categorised into two,