this article is a theoretical reflection that is part of a study named em defesa da sociedade: a inven？？o dos cuidados paliativos (in defense of society: the invention of palliative care). in order to articulate this discussion, we used the 2007edition of the palliative care manual published by the world health organization (who), as we understand it is part of a body of work capable of producing subjectivities and ruling conduct. in this sense, we intend to understand how the discourses on palliative care are associated and promote the invention of a new subject that would work as a bio-political strategy in order to defend society. based on the textual analysis of the discourse presented in the manual, with the help of the cultural studies framework and inspired by the works of michel foucault, we present one of the possible meanings derived from the readings of the who guide. thus, we observe the (re)organization and (re)invention of a subject that invests in the subjectivity of individuals and constitutes an actual framework that regulates and rules the population.