Compare and contrast the views of Goffman and Foucault on how social oreder is produced. Essay

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TMA 04

Compare and contrast the views of Goffman and Foucault on how social oreder is produced.

In a community some form of order is an essential foundation for people to live and interact together. ‘’Order is part of the way people both imagine and practise their social existence.’’ (Silva et al., 2009, p. 311) Taylor (2004, p.58) argued that ‘’ the human capacity to imagine order is at the foundation of society itself.’’ (Taylor, cited in Silva et al., 2009 p.311) Social order draw in imagination, practices, the fitting together of people and things, and ideas about the past and the future. (Silva et al., 2009)There are many explanations of how social order is produced, Erving Goffman (1959, 1971 and 1972) and Michel Foucault
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As a mean of mediation radio, television, newspapers, magazines and the internet can sometimes dictate many peoples idea about what is going on in the society. By ‘blindly’ believing in what the media says Cohen (1973) argues that ‘’ the portrayal of folk devils in the media creates a moral panic in society at large whereby people are both terrified and outraged’’ (Cohen, cited in Silva et al., 2009 p. 370 ) which is often neither rational nor relative to the actual size of the problem. This is a good example of how power over the public discourse informs how people think and behave in a society. Furthermore, under this media influence, people will demand from the government to come up with more enforcement of based solutions. New laws and severe punishments increase state control over the people whilst offering them the promise of security. As an example of this, and of Foucault’s theory the introduction of the Anti-social Behaviour Orders (ASBOs) in the U.K. illustrate the way in which the state uses punishment to stop or control behaviour that is deemed anti-social. On the other hand, members of the public are encouraged to report incidents to the ASBOs team which gives power to the individual of the society to judge what anti-social behaviour is, placing the individual on the center of the stage as Goffman suggested.
In conclusion, Goffman and Foucault