Embracing Vulnerability : The Challenges and Implications for Law book cover
1st Edition

Embracing Vulnerability
The Challenges and Implications for Law

ISBN 9781138476929
Published February 28, 2020 by Routledge
206 Pages

FREE Standard Shipping
USD $160.00

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

This book brings together legal scholars engaging with vulnerability theory to explore the implications and challenges for law of understanding vulnerability as generative and a source of connection and development.

The book is structured into five sections that cover fields of law where there is already significant recourse to the concept of vulnerability. These sections include a main chapter by a legal theorist who has previously examined the creative potential of vulnerability and responses from scholars working in the same field. This is designed to draw out some of the central debates concerning how vulnerability is conceptualised in law.

Several contributors highlight the need to re-focus on some of these more positive aspects of vulnerability to counter the way law is being used enable persons to escape the stigma associated with vulnerability by concealing that condition. They seek to explore how law might embrace vulnerability, rather than conceal it. The book also includes contributions that seek to bring vulnerability into a non-binary relationship with other core legal concepts, such as autonomy and dignity. Rather than discarding these legal concepts in favour of vulnerability, these contributions highlight how vulnerability can be entwined with relational autonomy and embodied dignity.

This book is essential reading for both students studying legal theory and practitioners interested in vulnerability.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Vulnerability Refigured

Daniel Bedford

Part 1: Family and Child Law

Family Law’s Instincts and the Relational Subject

Alison Diduck

Response: Reflections on ‘Family Law’s Instincts’: law’s varied Relationship with the vulnerabilities of family law’s children

Jo Bridgeman

Part 2: Law and Ageing

Ageing and Universal Beneficial Vulnerability

Jonathan Herring

Response: Reflections on Ageing and the Binaries of Vulnerability

Rosie Harding

Part 3: Healthcare Law

The Idea of Vulnerability in Healthcare Law and Ethics: From the Margins to the Mainstream?

Mary Neal

Response: Challenging the Frames of Health Care Law

Beverley Clough

Part 4: Labour Law

The Potential and Limitations of the Vulnerability Approach for Labour Law

Lisa Rodgers

Response: Vulnerability and Labour Law: On the Transition from Theory to Practice

Nicole Busby

Part 5: Human Rights Law

Embracing Vulnerability: Towards Human Rights for a More-Than-Human World

Anna Grear

Response: On Some Problems with Rights

Fiona De Londras

View More



Dr Daniel Bedford, Senior Lecturer in Law, University of Portsmouth.

Jonathan Herring, DW Wolfe-Clarendon Fellow in Law at Exeter College, Oxford University and Professor of Law at the Law Faculty, Oxford University.