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Care and Care Work - A question of Economy, Justice and Democracy.

Care and Care Work - A question of Economy, Justice and Democracy.

An inherent problem of capitalist societies has ever been that their primary orientation -- towards maximisation of profit and self-interested utility, towards optimisation of value and pursuit of particular interests, towards rationalisation and efficiency -- is in conflict with ideas of a good life not just for a few members of society, but for all. Although as modern societies they embody a promise of equal participation in material and ideational goods and associated opportunities for all members of society to engage in effective self-care and caring, their self-conception as performance societies means that this is in fact meritocratically framed. The emphasis is on the individual as autonomous and capable of self-care, while caring is at odds with this, and can best be realised in connection with participatory and need-based justice, i.e. in a framework that deems care requirements to be legitimate.

In this constellation, self-care and reciprocal care, and hence also care work, are directly linked with questions of justice and democracy. By duly accommodating the care requirements that are prerequisites for a functioning life and coexistence, they foster social integration and cohesion. Conversely, people's ways and means of caring for themselves and others and obtaining care from society play a part in determining how and to what extent they can participate economically, politically, socially and culturally in society's goods and values. Therefore, questions of justice and democracy have a place at the core of the care debate and international care research.


An essay on life, care and death in the "Brave New World" after "1984",Between dystopias and alternative ideas of caring,Book review: Care, welfare, and society,Capitalism goes care: elder and child care between market,state, profession,and family and questions of justice and inequality,Care revolution,Collective review on "Gendered Migrations and Global Social Reproduction" and "Care in Context – Transnational Gender Perspectives",Confronting capital's care fix: care through the lens of democracy,Counter-Landnahme? Labour disputes in the care-work field,Section Header,The crisis in Greece: questions of economy, state and democracy,Women in rural South Africa: a post-wage existence and the role of the state,Worker cooperatives: alternative governance for caring and precarious work

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