America’s Drug War and the Body Politic
This chapter builds on the insights about the connection between physical self-management and the body and the relationship of exclusion by exploring another figure of heteronomy, the drug addict. As with the adolescent from the previous chapter, the drug addict demonstrates how autonomy functions as an exclusionary discourse that delineates the boundaries of political community. However, the chapter shifts the focus from the practices of cultivating autonomy to how failure to behave in a way deemed autonomous results in exclusion from the political community. The drug war is illustrative of the ways that self-governing subjects and self-governing communities are protected from threats to their autonomy. In short, the practices of the drug war are justified by the norm of autonomy or concern with maintaining the ability of individuals to self-govern and thus to participate in democratic self-governance.
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