1 Department of Learning, Danish School of Education, Aarhus University, Aarhus University2 Danish School of Education - Pædagogisk Sociologi, Emdrup, Danish School of Education, Arts, Aarhus University3 Danish School of Education - Pædagogisk Sociologi, Emdrup, Danish School of Education, Arts, Aarhus University
This article reports on the ways in which psychiatric practice and power were constituted in a Danish asylum at the beginning of the nineteenth century. The point of departure will be a complaint by a former patient questioning the practice at the asylum in 1829. In an analysis of this narrative the study draws upon Foucauldian concepts like disciplinary power, confession, pastoral power and subjectivation. I will argue that the critique of the patient provides us with an example of the way that disciplinary power works in the case of an informal indictment of the methods and practice at an asylum. A key issue is whether the critique is not itself a part of the self-legitimation of disciplinary power.