Affective Equality: Love, Care and Injustice by Kathleen Lynch, John Baker, Maureen Lyons

By Kathleen Lynch, John Baker, Maureen Lyons

This groundbreaking book presents a brand new viewpoint on equality through highlighting and exploring affective equality, the element of equality considering relationships of affection, care and cohesion. Drawing on reviews of intimate worrying, or "love laboring," it unearths the intensity, complexity and multidimensionality of affective inequality.

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Extra resources for Affective Equality: Love, Care and Injustice

Sample text

Drawing on the tradition of caregiving to new mothers, Kittay articulates: a principle of doulia: Just as we have required care to survive and thrive, so we need to provide conditions that allow others – including those who do the work of caring – to receive the care they need to survive and thrive. (Kittay, 1999: 107, emphasis in the original) An egalitarian ideal of support for carers should therefore attend to the whole range of their needs. A third major theme is that the relationship between caregiver and care recipient can be more or less egalitarian.

She maintains that women’s concern for others and for continuity and connection is an alternative model of justice. The idea that women have a ‘different voice’ (Gilligan, 1982) has played an important but controversial role in the debate over the importance of legal rights in promoting equality. 24 Affective Equality Law’s presence in the affective domain Because of its regulatory role in society, law is implicated in many social practices. Law both reflects and constitutes social relations (Ewick and Silbey, 1998; Gordon, 1984; Hunt, 1993; McCann, 1994).

If rights are to be taken seriously in the affective sphere, a key question will be whether to assert a ‘meta right’ to care (West, 2003). Work on the positive rights required to ground such a meta right to care dovetails with critical legal scholarship on socio-economic rights (Pieterse, 2004). Critical legal scholars have pointed out that the civil and political rights that take prominence in most Western constitutions need to be underscored by the social rights required to exercise them (Jackman and Porter, 1999).

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