Journal of Moral Education 14 (3):149-161 (1985)
|Abstract||Abstract This paper first examines Carol Gilligan's thesis that men and women use different moral languages to resolve moral dilemmas; women speak a language of caring and responsibility and men speak a language of rights and justice. Gilligan's statements about women's moral language can be interpreted in three different ways. Each one of these is analysed. Then it is questioned whether Gilligan's thesis about men's and women's moral languages can be grounded with adequate philosophical assumptions. It is argued that three main moral theories cannot undergird this dichotomy and further, that it is unacceptable to divide morality on the basis of gender. Instead, Gilligan's thesis can provide a criticism of the quality of public moral life and thus be a means to develop a rather different moral theory for both men and women. ?This paper is an enlarged version of one section of a paper given at the University of Pennsylvania. My most sincere thanks to members of that seminar and to Professor Dwight Boyd and the unknown readers of the Journal of Moral Education for most helpful comments on an earlier draft of this paper|
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