an exercise in miscellany

Panopticon

In words & phrases on January 9, 2011 at 11:27 am

The Panopticon is a type of prison building designed by English philosopher and social theorist Jeremy Bentham who in 1785 described it as “a new mode of obtaining power of mind over mind, in a quantity hitherto without example.”  The concept of the design is to allow an observer to observe (-opticon) all (pan-) prisoners without the prisoners being able to tell whether they are being watched, thereby conveying what one architect has called the “sentiment of an invisible omniscience.”

via Panopticon – Wikipedia

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