Our old disciplinary societies were filled with external coercion: prohibitions, moral codes, instructions, fire-and-brimstone preachers, sanctimonious neighbours. If we went against the fabric of society, we risked and accepted our punishment, whether it came from the hands of worldly powers or in divine retribution.
Our motivations today come from within. Our goals are success and health. Our life is like a project, its worth measured by our accumulation of those things. No longer obedience-subjects, we are achievement-subjects. If the rejects of disciplinary society were madmen and criminals, the rejects of achievement society are depressives and losers.
I have a suspicion that the root cause of this is our society’s addiction to social media leading to our hyper inflated need to ‘keep up with the Jonses.’