Power, freedom, and individuality: Foucault and sexual difference [Book Review]

Human Studies 28 (1):1 - 14 (2005)
Abstract
This paper offers a detailed account of Foucaults ethical and political notion of individuality as presented in his late work, and discusses its relationship to the feminist project of the theory of sexual difference. I argue that Foucaults elaboration of the classical ethos of care for the self opens the way for regarding the I-woman as an ethical, political and aesthetic self-creation. However, it has significant limitations that cannot be ignored. I elaborate on two aspects of Foucaults avoidance of sexual difference as a relevant category for an account of political and ethical individuality, which thus implicitly associates individual agency with men. I argue that Foucault implicitly assumes the existence of an ontological desire to become engaged in political self-creation. However, the ethical position of self-knowledge and desire should be understood as a contingent option that depends on material and historical conditions for its realization. Hence, I argue that a feminist reworking of Foucaults notion of political individuality should add a substantial ethical condition to the imperative of self-knowledge and self-creation – making possible the desiring woman subject.
Keywords foucault  freedom  individuality  power  sexual difference  subjectivity
Categories (categorize this paper)
Options
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
 
Download options
PhilPapers Archive


Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 11,105
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Citations of this work BETA
Similar books and articles
Analytics

Monthly downloads

Added to index

2009-01-28

Total downloads

15 ( #108,453 of 1,101,781 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #292,275 of 1,101,781 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature


Discussion
Start a new thread
Order:
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.