Popular Posts

Monday, January 14, 2013

REVIEW: DUSTY by yellowbella:The Mesh of Power - Foucault

DUSTY By yellowbella

The Mesh of Power - Foucault
Chapt. 14

"She said she didn't teach me to talk that way," I 

mumble, feeling embarrassed. I mean, I was just 

reprimanded by my mother in front of all of my 

friends. She's making me wear this dress and these 

flats. I have more guidelines and rules than I can 

remember. I feel suffocated, like my mom and dad 

are always watching me.

Let me be my own person!

My parents still enforce a bedtime, and I'm not 

allowed to be on the phone after eight. Mom gives 

me crap about how much make-up I wear, or how 

short my skirt is. She doesn't let me eat sugar or 

drink soda. Anytime I ask to spend time with Alice, 

they complain about me never being home. And 

now I can't speak freely without being censored.

Their restraints are too tight, and I'm 

claustrophobic. I can feel myself protesting against 

their hold. It's a pressure in my chest and tension in 

my jaw. It's the anger that runs cold through my 

veins every time I'm told what to do, or left feeling 

untrusted. It's in the pity in Carlisle and Esme's 

eyes, and in every curse word Alice and Edward are 

allowed to say.

It makes me want to scream.

But I don't.

I have a part to play.  

chapt 17

What would her reaction be if I said no instead of 

doing as she asked? Their hold on me is already so 

constricting, I don't even want to think about how 

tight it would get if I started acting out.

"Bella, wash your face or you're not going 

anywhere." Mom drops her purse and keys on the 

coffee table and sits down, showing me how serious 

she is.

I feel claustrophobic. Their rules and expectations 

are strangling me. She wants me to remain a little 

girl forever, but here I am, fifteen ready to be 

eighteen. Ready to get out of here.

It's why I need the Cullens so badly. I need the 

margin they offer, even if it's only for the weekend. 

They supply me with room to breathe, where my 

parents are watching my every move. Alice and 

Edward might make some wrong decisions, but at 

least they're allowed to make their own mistakes. I 

still get crap about listening to music with curse 

words in the lyrics. My mother gives me 


looks if I wear something she doesn't approve of. 

My dad flashes his stupid badge every time he 


me off at school. I'm not allowed in the car with 

Edward, I'm not allowed to be on the phone after 

eight, and I'm apparently not allowed to wear 


This is just another reason why Edward and I need 

to remain a secret.

No boys until I'm seventeen. That's the house rule. 

My dad thinks boys are a distraction, and my mom 

believes they're only after one thing. They can't 

believe that Carlisle and Esme allow Alice to be in 

such a serious relationship. My mom appreciates my 

friendship with Garrett. But no, no boyfriends. Not 

even Garrett. Even though I'm sure he's who she 

would choose for me. Who knows, if I came to them 

with Garrett, they might 

even make an exception 


this seventeen rule.

But if my mom and dad 

were to learn about me 


Edward, everything would be taken away. My 

weekends and school vacations out of this house 

would be gone, and I'd be stuck here, under their 


And maybe that would 

be okay if they'd let me 


Edward, but they 

wouldn't. I don't know 

what my 

dad would do. I don't really know if Edward would 

get in any kind of trouble or not, but I wouldn't be 

surprised if they made me switch schools. My phone 

would be gone, and the little independence I do 

have. I'd never be allowed back over to Alice's. I 

don't even know if they'd let me be her friend.

All of that is not something I can risk. Not 



at fifteen.

So I wash my face.

chapt 23

Pete and Ben start to give me a hard time. But they 

don't know, and neither does Alice, really. No one 

has parents like mine. They're constantly looking 


change in me … any little imperfection will set them 

off, and all of this will be taken away.

Mom and Esme watch us from the bar. Esme is all 

smiles, happy to see us happy, but Mom's face is a 

little different. Her eyes are looking a little harder … 

deeper. If I dance the wrong way she might say 

something. Or maybe she can tell that Alice has 

been drinking. I don't know, but I hate being under 

her microscope.

As I scope my surroundings, I notice she isn't the 

only one looking. Edward, who has his hands in his 

pockets and his Ray Bans on his face, even though 

it's after twilight, is looking in my direction, too. So 

is Garrett. I'm on this dance floor with my girl, but I 

feel like their stares are pulling me in three 


directions. They all want something different: the 

uncorrupted daughter; a told secret; more than 


All at once, at a place like this, it's almost too much 

to handle.

Esme puts her arms around me, hugging me tight. 

"Oh, let her stay, Renee. This party is almost over 


Mom looks to Dad, and Dad looks at me. It's like 

he's checking me for a crack … an imperfection, a 

sign that he can't trust me. I have many reasons 

they shouldn't trust me, but never have I given him 

one. He's leery, though. Maybe he can't help it. I'm 

his daughter, but it's his job to seek untruth in 


I resent him for it, even though I shouldn't. Even 

though I am a liar; I detest him for knowing what 


look for—for making my life harder than I've 


made it myself.

I can hardly contain my smile, but I do. I don't 


to look too relieved in their decision to let me stay. 

My dad might get suspicious. He might wonder why 

I care so much. He might find the crack.

The Gaze of Surveillance

chapt 28

"How late did you girls stay 

up? " Mom asks. She's 

helping us fold up our fort, 

one blanket at a time.

Mom's pitch is too high. Her 

eyes are too weary. 

What she's really asking is, what were you doing 

that I need to know about? Why did you sleep until 

three in the afternoon?

chapt 37

Until Dad pulls the car into the driveway and asks, 

"What the hell was that, Isabella?"

I hear him clearly.

Settling back into my role is seamless, but not 

facile. With years of practice and the help of my 

body, I sit up straight, I smile, and I force my voice 

out. My eyes light up, my cheeks redden, my 

dimples dip. Everything clicks into place, and I'm 


longer the girl with the underworking heart, but the 

daughter they're used to me being. I'm Isabella 


I play stupid. "What?"

Charlie meets my gaze through the rear-view 


"Edward," he says.

I roll my backed-up-with-tears eyes and smirk. 

"Dad, nothing. It's just Edward."

"We don't like it," Mom chimes in, with so much 

implication behind her tone.

With my hand on the door handle and my stare on 

the back of my mother's head, I say with a little 

more spit than I should, "You don't have to like it."



Quotes from the Mesh of Power - Michel 


In their work, they still continue to regard the 

signified of power, the central point, that in which 

power consists, as prohibition, law, the act of 


no, and above all, the figure or expression: “You 

must not.” Power is essentially those who say, “You 

must not.”

What was the problem that always reappeared, that 

was perpetually re-elaborated? The problem of 

prohibition, essentially the prohibition of incest


from this matrix, from this kernel that would be the 

prohibition of incest, one attempted to understand 

the general functioning of the system

...with the work of Clastres4, for example, a whole 

new conceptualization of power as technology,...

In other words, the West never had another system of representation, expression 

or analysis of power aside from that of rights.....

elementary, fundamental, etc. ideas which are those of law, rule, sovereign, 

commission, etc. 

I believe that we must now free ourselves from this juridical 

conception of power – this conception of power derived from the law and 

sovereign, from the rule and prohibition – if we wish to proceed towards 


analysis of the real functioning of power, rather than its mere 


I will attempt, with regard to sexuality, not to 

conceive of power from the juridical point of view, 

but from the technological...

Consequently, economic processes, diverse 

mechanisms, which in a certain way remained 

outside control, required the establishment of a 

continuous, minute power, in a certain atomizing 

fashion; from a lacunal, global power to a 

continuous, atomic, and individualizing power: that 

everyone, each individual in and of himself, in his 

body, in his movements, could be controlled, in the 

place of total and mass controls.

...this second necessity: finding a power mechanism 

such that, at the same time that it controlled things 

and persons right down to the most minute detail, 


would neither be expensive nor essentially 


on society, that it would, on the contrary, be 

exercised through the economic processes 

themselves...(and this became the family).

On the one hand, there was this technology that I 

will call “discipline.” Discipline is basically the 

mechanism of power by which we come to exert 

control in the social body right down to the finest 

elements, by which we succeed in grabbing hold of 

the social atoms themselves, which is to say 

individuals. Techniques for the individualization of 

power. How to monitor [surveiller] someone, how to 

control his conduct, his behavior, his aptitudes, how 

to intensify his performance, multiply his capacities, 

how to put him in a place where he will be most 

useful: this is what I mean by discipline.

what I will name the individualizing technology of 

power, a technology that basically targets 

individuals right down to their bodies, their 

behaviors; it is grosso modo a kind of political 

anatomy, an anatomo-politics, an anatomy that 

targets individuals to the point of anatomizing them.

...but, rather, power must be exercised over 

individuals insofar as they constitute a kind of 

biological entity that must be taken into 

consideration if we actually want to use this 

population as a machine for producing, for 


wealth and goods, for producing other individuals...

...sex is situated very precisely at the point of 

articulation between the individual disciplines of the 

body and the regulations of population. Sex is that 

through which one can assure the surveillance of 

individuals, and we understand why in the 18th 

century, and precisely in secondary schools, 

adolescent sexuality became a medical problem, a 

moral problem, nearly a political problem of the 

highest importance, because, through – and under 

the pretext of – this control of sexuality, one could 

monitor high schoolers, adolescents, over the 


of their lives, at each instant, even during their 


Sex is the lever between anatomo-politics and bio-

politics; it is at the juncture of disciplines and 

regulations, and it is in this function that it became, 

at the end of the 19th century, a political 

component of the utmost importance for making 

society into a machine of production.

...whereas, using the concept of the forbidden – 

which, in a certain sense, is more or less isomorphic 

to every society – we couldn’t do a history of 


...we live in a society which is in the process of no 

longer being a juridical society. Juridical society was 

the monarchical society. From the 19th century 

onward, in societies which appear as societies of 

rights, with parliaments, legislatures, codes, courts, 

an entirely different mechanism of power was 

beginning to seep in, which did not follow juridical 

forms and which did not have the law as its 

fundamental principle, but instead had the principle 

of the norm, but instead, medicine, social controls, 

psychiatry, psychology. We are therefore in a 

disciplinary world.

This is because we live in a society where crime is 

no longer simply and essentially a transgression of 

the law, but rather a deviation in relation to a norm.

I  believe that the way in which the sexuality of 

children was made into a fundamental problem for 

the bourgeois family during the 19th century 

provoked and made possible a great number of 

controls over the family, over parents, over 


and created at the same time a whole series of new 

pleasures: the pleasure of parents in monitoring 

children, the pleasure of children in playing with 

their own sexuality, against their parents and with 

their parents, an entirely new economy of pleasure 

around the body of the child. We needn’t 


say that parents, out of some sort of masochism, 

self-identify with the law…


DUSTY has fictionalized the essential work of 

Foucault on this subject, allowing us to more deeply 

understand continental philosophy upon which the 

thought of the western world rests on today. Bella's 

dilemma is that she is tightly caught in a very fine 

mesh of the disciplinary judicial  Discourse of 




and Edward are caught in a very loose mesh of 

power based on norms. Bella understands their 

position but they 

cannot understand how tightly she is trapped by 


law of 18 as legal enfranchisement. 

When the secret is exposed Alice and Edward 

discuss how Bella/Bliss has lied to them both and 

their judgement is based on morality and trust 

issues. They are completely unaware of the 

Foucauldian Grid of 

power/knowledge/capital/normality while Bliss is 

acutely aware of them. Bliss is forced to "split" to 

experience a double self. She feels her true self is 

the self she experiences with Edward, but Dusty

has her in his own mesh of power which she is 

unaware of, simply replicating the one from her 


Her assumed highly controlled alternative self, 

Isabella Bliss, is a LIE. She must keep the secret,

the LIE, to experience what she believes is her 


self, so the lies she must tell to protect "her true 

self" must negate the LIE of her "pretend" self, 

which is a LIE, 

involving her 

in a double negation to establish her own truth, 

which threatens 

to break her and melt her down.

To quote Jean Baudrillard on this:"Children 

play a double game. They are in fact children, 

but they do not BELIEVE they are children 


so they play a double-game," which is what 

we see Bella doing in DUSTY.

Edward is in a different situation. Since the secret is 

forbidden in a more surface awareness of incest, he 

experiences guilt, because the constraints are his 

own based primarily in the beginning on her tender 

age and the incest taboo. He begins to wish for an 

open relationship with 

Bella as she is now old enough that he feels  it will 

be perceived as normal.

The two parental strategies are diametrically 

opposed and they mirror the reality of this in our 

present culture. Extreme control leads to 

transgression and seduction and no or little control 

leads to trying to find limits where there are none 


guilt. But the transgressor has the advantage of 

awareness and consciousness of existential choice, 

but Edward, who has been seduced by "his little 

sister" can only experience guilt and secrecy which 

he tries to 

alleviate with cocaine.

This is a complex fanfiction  with exceptionally 

sophisticated themes, and shocking implications 

that are arousing unconscious fantasies among 

readers who are responding with rage, unconscious 

rage. Many prefer the innocuous fanfics that follow 

the easy template of plot turns and superficial 

understanding that are easy to grasp and require

no serious emotional probing of self.

The neo-liberalism of Esme and Carlisle leaves this 

loosely constructed mesh which does not prepare 

their children for the constraints they will meet,  

while Charlie and Renee bind their daughter and 

doom her to a restricted, disciplined future life.

And this may be the reason for the polarizing 

response to this story. The psychological incest is 

revealed and concealed by the fact that Edward and 

Bella are not blood relatives, but is that really the 

issue in incest taboo. A genealogy of the incest  

taboo reveals that it arose when woman were  

considered as objects to be exchanged for affiliation 

with another group, so the original incest taboo was 

between brother and sister NOT father/mother and 

children. And this has morphed into criminal  

abnormal behavior when no exchange is the 

issue anymore. I am sure the parental  modes of 

parenting are arousing  deeply disturbing feelings.  

This is good. This is what reading is supposed to do  

for the reader.

Now Dusty is out as a book - Innocents
Dusty's Cover for Publication



  1. Are you shitting me? I'm not being a smart mouth and this isn't sarcasm. I actually want to know if you are in fact shitting me? I mean I get it, your first post was popular, a bit hard to follow what with your use of big words and flamboyantly showing off your intelligence to the world about a fic. This is a fanfic about two characters that have made a fandom and have made friendships. At this point you really are beating a dead horse and just making yourself look ridiculous. I can spout big words and analyze just about anything in this fandom. I can compare it to all the greats out there and I can also write up a review (I've done reviews on a blog MANY times over) and I can do it all without sounding arrogant and ridiculous. It is possible to do that. It's also possible to make a person want to read and not want to read with a single review of a fic. Keep it simple. Don't act like this fic is above it all, that this one fic in a fandom with THOUSANDS of other fics is the best and that NONE can surpass it, because that just makes you look ignorant.

    Was this fic good? No clue, don't care to find out. With all the hate surrounding it, I'm glad I don't know. BUT as a reader in this fandom what I see here is plain and simply stupid. It makes you look obsessed with the writers. i get it. I LOVE some of the writers in this fandom but I'm not about to boil a bunny to make my love known (which is pretty much what you've done here)

    Write a blog post once, praise it, tell the reader YOU MUST READ THIS! Great! You've done that. Write a second post. Okay, it's getting a little creepy in here, gonna go check the bushes. Do it a third time though? NOW you make me wanna know if you have my picture hung up just above your screen. Maybe you have tiny hearts around me face? Maybe our names are written in the back with tiny little xoxo's?

    You want to draw people into this fic, by all means do, I've heard great things just as I have heard bad things. You're going about this all wrong though. Right now, and with blogs in the past, you are making the reader feel below the fic, you are making them feel like it;s not their cup of tea with your blog and your deductions. Tell us about the meat and potatoes of this fic, tell us the great and tell us the bad. What exactly is your purpose here? Is there some Nobel Peace prize in this fandom I don't know about? Is that why you are writing this up week after week? I mean you are literally running this into the ground, you must realize that?

    Tell the reader what we want to know and leave all your self importance BS out of it.

    Legit Lady Cave

    1. You don't even want to know how insane this woman is. I'm not even joking. She goes on blogs and defends Kristen Stewart cheating using this same MO. She tries to show us all just how intelligent she is and ends up just embarrassing herself. If you have a different opinion, she writes page long essays trying to convince people that a woman cheating with a married man is the right thing. lol. Seriously insane! I'm truly scared for the authors of Dusty. I didn't like the fic at all, but they both seem like good people. I hope they don't fall into this woman's trap. She really does need help.

  2. for someone who doesn't care, you went on for a long time, LLC.

  3. So... Someone wrote a review for a review about a fic they've never read, but did manage to comment on the "hate" around it by spreading more of it here, to tell you not to review so much?

    Well, if that's not the most idiotic thing I've ever heard.

    (Yes, yes, yes... I've heard all about my ego and about how much I love myself.)

    And the other one says you're a stalker while stalking your blog, which is again, about a fic they didn't like.

    Mind blowing. No wonder why they're threatened by your intelligence. Lol.

    Anyway, another wonderful review! You manage to spark up the best discussions in the group, you know. Even if some of us have to pull up the wiki page so we know who you're talking about.

    You said you're posting the review in pieces and I really can't wait to read every single one of them. :) Thank you so much for your support and the time you take to write them.


Be kind to each other even when you disagree.