The List Serves. Population Control and Power


Inspired by taxonomist Jack Goody’s theorizing of ‘ancient lists’ as ‘intellectual technologies’, this book analyzes listing practices in modern and contemporary formations of power, and how they operate in the installation and securing of the milieus of circulation that characterize Michel Foucault’s conception of governmentality. Propelling the list’s role in the delimitation and policing of risky and threatening elements from out of history and into a contemporary analysis of power, this work demonstrates how assemblages of computer, statistical, and list technologies first deployed by the Nazi regime continue to resonate significantly in the segmenting and constitution of a critical classification of contemporary homo sapiens: the terrorist class, or homo sacer.

Preferred Citation
Werbin, Kenneth C.: The List Serves. Population Control and Power. Amsterdam: Institute of Network Cultures 2017. DOI:
 author = {Werbin, Kenneth C.},
 title = {The List Serves. Population Control and Power},
 year = 2017,
 doi = "\url{}",
 volume = 22,
 address = {Amsterdam},
 series = {Theory on Demand},
 publisher = {Institute of Network Cultures},
 isbn = {978-94-92302-15-1},
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