The history witnesses how the discourse plays a greater role in shaping a particular
culture. From the 1900 onwards, the discourse has its great impact on the various
aspects of social as well as an economic strategy. For example, ‘Nazi’ falls under
the category of ‘death’, the ‘Communists’ are always equated with ‘decay’ and ‘Islam’
is called the other side of ‘terrorism’. What is this discourse that changed the world
view? Why is this discourse? How does this discourse work? Who are the people
to propagate this discourse?
In Foucauldian sense, ‘discourse’ is an area of social knowledge which is bounded
and a system of statements through which the world can be judged and viewed.
According to Foucault, discourse is the systems of thoughts composed of ideas,
attitudes, and courses of action, beliefs and practices that systematically construct
the subjects and the worlds of which we speak. It is through the discourse that the
relationship of everything exists in this world, whether it is male-female relationship or God-human relationship. ‘Discourse’ can be classified into four categories depending
upon the objective—exposition, narration, description and argument. ‘Exposition’ focuses
on various aspects of the comparative study of two inter or intra fields of culture, whereas
‘narration’ is based on the story or the description related to the exposition; it is a kind
of medium of communication through which the concept of ‘exposition’ can be expressed.
‘Description’ relates to the senses of the audience; it is the image maker in the mind
of the reader or the receiver. ‘Argument’ is something where all three aspects of discourse
are brought together and with the help of reasoning and logic the audience or the
receiver is forced to believe or accept the created discourse. Foucault talks about the
philosophical implications of the historical method of analyzing the ‘discourse’.
“Discourse is not the majestically unfolding manifestation of a thinking, knowing,
speaking subject, but, on the contrary, a totality, in which the dispersion of the subject
and his discontinuity with himself may be determined.”