1st Edition

Moral Boundaries A Political Argument for an Ethic of Care

By Joan Tronto Copyright 1993
    242 Pages
    by Routledge

    242 Pages
    by Routledge

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    In Moral Boundaries Joan C. Tronto provides one of the most original responses to the controversial questions surrounding women and caring. Tronto demonstrates that feminist thinkers have failed to realise the political context which has shaped their debates about care. It is her belief that care cannot be a useful moral and political concept until its traditional and ideological associations as a women's morality are challenged. Moral Boundaries contests the association of care with women as empirically and historically inaccurate, as well as politically unwise. In our society, members of unprivileged groups such as the working classes and people of color also do disproportionate amounts of caring. Tronto presents care as one of the central activites of human life and illustrates the ways in which society degrades the importance of caring in order to maintain the power of those who are privileged.

    Winner of the 2023 Benjamin E. Lippincott APSA Award for exceptional work by a living political theorist that is still considered significant after a time span of at least 15 years since the original publication

    PART ONE: Introduction -- Chapter 1: Moral Boundaries and Political Change -- The Power of Context and the Context of Power, Three Moral Boundaries, Women's Morality As a Strategic Predicament, Argument of This Book -- PART Two: Against "Women's Morality" -- Chapter 2: Universalistic Morality and Moral Sentiments -- Morality and Forms of Life, Universalistic Morality and Eighteenth Century Life, Social Distance and the Demise of Moral Sentiments, The Containment of Women and the Engendering of Moral Sentiment, Lessons for an Ethic of Care -- Chapter 3: Is Morality Gendered? -- Lawrence Koh /berg: The Virtuous Elite, Carol Gilligan's Different Voice and its Limits, Gender Ideology and Forms of Privilege At Work -- PART THREE: For An Ethic of Care -- Chapter 4: Care IOI -- Defining Care, Marginalizing Care, The Promise of Care: Care's Power -- Chapter 5: An Ethic of Care -- The Practice of An Ethic of Care, Moral Dilemmas in the Practice of Care, Expanding Our Moral Terrain, Ethics and Politics -- Chapter 6: Care and Political Theory -- Against a "Morality First" Strategy, Care As a Political Ideal o Care And Political Strategy, Moral Boundaries and a Political Concept of Care -- NOTES -- INDEX.


    Joan C. Tronto is professor of political science at City University of New York Graduate Center and Hunter College.

    "...Tornto's book challenges feminists to think harder about what it means to take care seriously as a political and theoretical ideal." -- Women and Politics