Book

The Ethics of Care

Virginia Held

Published in print December 2005 | ISBN: 9780195180992
Published online February 2006 | e-ISBN: 9780199785957 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0195180992.001.0001

Series: Studies in Feminist Philosophy

The Ethics of Care

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The book presents the ethics of care as a promising alternative to more familiar moral theories. The ethics of care is only a few decades old, yet it has become a distinct moral theory or normative approach, relevant to global and political matters as well as to the personal relations that can most clearly exemplify care. The book examines the central ideas, characteristics, and potential importance of the ethics of care. It discusses the feminist roots of this moral approach and why the ethics of care can be a morality with universal appeal. The book explores what is meant by “care” and what a caring person is like. Where such other moral theories as Kantian morality and utilitarianism demand impartiality above all, the ethics of care understands the moral import of ties to families and groups. It evaluates such ties, differing from virtue ethics by focusing on caring relations rather than the virtues of individuals. The book proposes how values such as justice, equality, and individual rights can “fit together” with values such as care, trust, mutual consideration, and solidarity. In considering the potential of the ethics of care for dealing with social issues, the book shows how the ethics of care is more promising than other moral theories for advice on how limited or expansive markets should be, showing how values other than market ones should have priority in such activities as childcare, health care, education, and in cultural activities. Finally, the book connects the ethics of care with the rising interest in civil society, and with limits on what law and rights are thought able to accomplish. It shows the promise of the ethics of care for dealing with global problems and with efforts to foster international civility.

Keywords: care; moral theory; feminism; Kantian morality; utilitarianism; virtue ethics; markets; health care; education; civil society

Book.  0 pages. 

Subjects: Moral Philosophy

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Table of Contents

Introduction in The Ethics of Care

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 The Caring Person in The Ethics of Care

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