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Why Care? A Feminist Re-appropriation of Confucian Xiao 孝

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Title: Why Care? A Feminist Re-appropriation of Confucian Xiao 孝
Authors: Rosenlee, Li-Hsiang Lisa
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Springer, Dordrecht
Citation: Rosenlee, L. L. (2014). Why Care? A Feminist Re-appropriation of Confucian Xiao 孝. In The Dao Companion to the Analects. https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-7113-0_15
Related To: https://dx.doi.org/10.1007/978-94-007-7113-0_15
Abstract: This chapter concerns the contemporary debate on the intersectionality of Confucianism with feminism in general and its compatibility with care ethics in particular. My intent here is to propose a hybrid feminist care ethics that is grounded in Confucianism by, on the one hand, integrating specifically the concepts of xiao 孝 and ren 仁 into existing care ethics so as to strengthen and broaden its theoretical horizon and, on the other, revising Confucian gender requirements in light of feminist demands for gender equity. It is my take that Confucian xiao 孝, as the root of ren 仁, is a moral vision that sees human inter-dependency as a strength in, and not a distraction from, human flourishing. In the same way, care ethics also starts with meeting the caring needs of one’s intimate loved ones, and caring relations in the personal realm for care ethicists have an ontological primacy. Morality for Confucius as well as for care ethicists, unlike the Kantian, liberal model that emphasizes detachment and personal autonomy, simply cannot bypass one’s affective ties in the familial realm. In the following, I will provide a hybrid account of care ethics and Confucianism – Confucian care – in which caring for the socially dependent and vulnerable starting with one’s loved ones is viewed as constitutive of the substance of one’s sense of the self; it forms part of one’s life’s journey to self-realization, not only in the realm of morality, but also in the realm of feminism as well.
URI/DOI: http://hdl.handle.net/10790/3267
DOI: 10.1007/978-94-007-7113-0_15
Appears in Collections:Rosenlee, Li-Hsiang Lisa



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