Analysis of "Discipline Power" in The Remains of the Day

Li Zhen
2021 English Language and Literature Studies  
The objective of this study is to analyze “discipline power” and its implications for the service staff characters in the novel The Remains of The Day. From the perspective of Foucault’s power theory, especially the notion of discipline power, this essay explores these characters’ different destinies and responses to power. Contrary to many scholars who have discussed hierarchical power that easily finds expression in the master-and-servant relation in the traditional
more » ... lish house in this novel, the current essay mainly focuses on discipline power, which is internalized in people, allowing them to be unconsciously manipulated. Therefore, this essay first takes “Darlington Hall” as a model to analyze its disciplinary function and then turns to the main character, the butler, Stevens, who lives in the house and whose conduct mirrors how discipline shapes him. Finally, this essay points out solutions to the problem of the control of power by analyzing how Stevens and the housekeeper, Miss Kenton, renew their identities. This renewal echoes Ishiguro’s attempt to pay attention to the fates of marginalized people and console the unconsoled ones.
doi:10.5539/ells.v11n1p46 fatcat:4pgqq45wqngydbrg2oqnq5hl2y