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Power Nap: Visualising sleep and neoliberal governmentality

Urquhart, Eilidh LU (2018) KOVM12 20181
Division of Art History and Visual Studies
Abstract
This thesis explores how representations of sleep and sleeplessness in mass culture can be reflective of shifts in the constitution of time and self-image driven by neoliberal capitalism, using Shattered, a reality TV show and Sleep Cycle, a self-tracking app, as points of analysis.

The first part of the thesis introduces various discourses around sleep, optimisation and productivity that exist in present day late capitalism, and authors and theorists who have studied them. Theories that outline the effects of capitalism on temporalities of daily life and selfhood
more generally are then discussed, using Teresa Brennan, David Harvey, Jonathan Crary and Georges Gurvitch as key sources.

In the second part, the cultural context and... (More)
This thesis explores how representations of sleep and sleeplessness in mass culture can be reflective of shifts in the constitution of time and self-image driven by neoliberal capitalism, using Shattered, a reality TV show and Sleep Cycle, a self-tracking app, as points of analysis.

The first part of the thesis introduces various discourses around sleep, optimisation and productivity that exist in present day late capitalism, and authors and theorists who have studied them. Theories that outline the effects of capitalism on temporalities of daily life and selfhood
more generally are then discussed, using Teresa Brennan, David Harvey, Jonathan Crary and Georges Gurvitch as key sources.

In the second part, the cultural context and influence of reality TV and the ‘Quantified Self’ self-tracking movement are discussed, followed by separate discourse analyses of both materials which identify key discourses present throughout both.

Finally, these discourses are contextualised within the contemporary neoliberal model of capitalism and the values of self-government and flexibility that it promotes, rooted in Foucauldian theories on governmentality and biopower. The thesis concludes by discussing the roles of visuality and screen technologies as an interface for biopower, the difficulties in defining governmentality, subjectivity, and self-government in neoliberalism, and the complex position of sleep in power structures that by nature have the effect of changing everyday time and relations with the body. (Less)
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author
Urquhart, Eilidh LU
supervisor
organization
course
KOVM12 20181
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
Neoliberalism, sleep, governmentality, reality TV, quantified self, self-tracking, biopolitics, time
language
English
id
8945849
date added to LUP
2018-06-11 15:49:48
date last changed
2018-06-11 15:49:48
@misc{8945849,
  abstract     = {This thesis explores how representations of sleep and sleeplessness in mass culture can be reflective of shifts in the constitution of time and self-image driven by neoliberal capitalism, using Shattered, a reality TV show and Sleep Cycle, a self-tracking app, as points of analysis.

The first part of the thesis introduces various discourses around sleep, optimisation and productivity that exist in present day late capitalism, and authors and theorists who have studied them. Theories that outline the effects of capitalism on temporalities of daily life and selfhood
more generally are then discussed, using Teresa Brennan, David Harvey, Jonathan Crary and Georges Gurvitch as key sources.

In the second part, the cultural context and influence of reality TV and the ‘Quantified Self’ self-tracking movement are discussed, followed by separate discourse analyses of both materials which identify key discourses present throughout both.

Finally, these discourses are contextualised within the contemporary neoliberal model of capitalism and the values of self-government and flexibility that it promotes, rooted in Foucauldian theories on governmentality and biopower. The thesis concludes by discussing the roles of visuality and screen technologies as an interface for biopower, the difficulties in defining governmentality, subjectivity, and self-government in neoliberalism, and the complex position of sleep in power structures that by nature have the effect of changing everyday time and relations with the body.},
  author       = {Urquhart, Eilidh},
  keyword      = {Neoliberalism,sleep,governmentality,reality TV,quantified self,self-tracking,biopolitics,time},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Power Nap: Visualising sleep and neoliberal governmentality},
  year         = {2018},
}