This paper offers a detailed account of Foucault's 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 Foucault's 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 Foucault's 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 Foucault's 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.
- Sexual difference