In order to practice effectively in today’s complex and changing environment, social workers need to have an understanding of how contemporary cultural and philosophical concepts relate to the people they work with and the fields they practice in. Exploring the ideas of philosophers, including Nietzsche, Gadamer, Taylor, Adorno, MacIntyre, Zizek and Derrida, this text demonstrates their relevance to social work practice and presents new approaches and frameworks to understanding social change.
Key Debates in Social Work and Philosophy introduces a range of concerns central to social work and social care, with chapters looking at questions such as:
- What is the ‘self’?
- How are communities formed?
- Why is ‘choice’ important?
- Are certain rights really applicable to all humans?
- What are the political and ethical implications of documenting your practice?
- What does it mean to be a professional social worker?
Each chapter focuses on a particular area of dispute, presenting the relevant philosophical theories, and considering how relevant social work examples and research can be used to further inform theoretical debate, and includes questions to prompt discussion and reflection.
The only book to examine the philosophical ideas that underlie and inform contemporary issues for social work and social care practitioners, this is a useful resource for those studying social work theory, policy and practice.
Table of Contents
Preface Introduction 1. Interpretation: Social Work and Hermeneutics 2. Community: The Case of the Missing Community 3. Identity: A Short Word from Nietzsche: Marginalisation, Recognition and Ressentiment 4. Ethics: Three Concerns About Human Rights 5. Documents: The Politics of Writing 6. Self: Who Am I, and What do I Actually Do? 7. Culture: The Culture Industry 8. Knowledge: Professionalised Practice and the Locus of Expertise
Tom Grimwood is Senior Lecturer and Programme Lead for the MA Social Work programme in the Faculty of Health and Wellbeing, University of Cumbria, UK.