• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Ethics, Maternal

  • By: Ronda Lee Levine
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

Virginia Held, Sara Ruddick, and Caroline Whit-beck are feminist philosophers advocating the concept of maternal ethics, or the idea that the majority of human relationships are held between unequal persons. Rather than building ethics on the idea that there is no substantial difference between one persona and another, these three philosophers claim that ethics needs to fit life, and that the relation between a mother and a child forms the essential basis for an ethics. Several criticisms of this approach to morality exist, including the idea that the theory idealizes motherhood and that not all mothers behave in an ethical manner toward their children (i.e., cases of neglect or abuse).

Sara Ruddick and Maternal Ethics

In Ruddick's article Maternal Thinking in the journal Feminist Studies, she sets ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles