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date: 12 May 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter builds a picture of a critical, feminist ethics of care as a feminist practical ethics for international relations. It focuses on care ethics as a moral framework for addressing the challenges of humanitarianism—in a manner that foregrounds human needs while not depoliticizing or taking for granted the category of “human.” A care ethics approach furthers the transformative aims of feminism, while refusing to cast “women-and-children” as vulnerable victims in need of protection. The ethics of care also offers a substantive focus for policy and practice around diverse and competing needs for care. Far from confining women to their roles as carers, this approach exposes patterns of gender inequality in care practices, while retaining a focus on the contribution of the voice and labour of care—in multiple and diverse forms—for all social groups and communities.

Keywords: care, ethics, gender, feminism, humanitarianism, paternalism, intervention

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