5/31/2011

Care arises from the concrete love

Recently I did some research on relationships of caring. I've come across to this description of caring by philosopher Eva F. Kittay, which I want to share here on my blog.

Kittay claim that "giving care to another infuses that other with the worth of the one who does the caring — to do damage to the cared-for is also to violate the caring individual. The iconic representation of this fundamental connection between a mothering person and the fate of the individual she has mothered is located in the figure of the Mater Dolorosa where the suffering of Christ is imaged through the suffering of Mary. The widespread appeal of this image and of the use of the locution ‘some mother’s child’ cross-culturally is telling. It speaks to the relationship, forged through the care of a vulnerable dependent, and the value that this relationship imparts to the one cared for and the caregiver alike. This relationship is ubiquitous in human society and is as fundamental to our humanity and our dignity as any property philosophers have invoked as distinctly human, and thereby the basis of a distinctly human dignity."

Source: Kittay, Eva Feder.‘Equality, Dignity and Disability', in Mary Ann Lyons and Fionnuala Waldron (eds.) (2005) Perspectives on Equality: The Second Seamus Heaney Lectures. Dublin: The Liffey Press, p. 116.

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