Fran~ois Ewald, Michel Foucault's assistant at College de France, has tried to elaborate a 'Foucauldian' legal philosophy and, on this basis, to give an account of the social law of the welfare state. Ewald (1990) begins an article which examines the concept of the norm with a reference to Foucault's analysis in The Will to Knowledge of the relations between law and norm. According to Ewald, Foucault puts forth what appears to be two conflicting theses. On the one hand, the development of 'bio-power', power over life, leads to 'the increasing significance of the play ofthe norm at the expense of the juridical system of law'; what ensues is 'a regress of the juridical'. On the other hand, the development of bio-power is accompanied by 'an inflation of legal instruments', the legislator's unprecedented loquacity (Foucault 1981, pp. 144-145).