The purpose of this study was to illuminate the ethically difficult situations experienced by care providers working in a nursing home. Individual interviews using a narrative approach were conducted. A phenomenological-hermeneutic method developed for researching life experience was applied in the analysis. The findings showed that care providers experience ethical challenges in their everyday work. The informants in this study found the balance between the ideal, autonomy and dignity to be a daily problem. They defined the culture they work in (...) as not supportive. They also thought they were not being seen and heard in situations where they disagree with the basic values of the organization. The results are discussed in terms of Habermas’s understanding of modern society. Care settings for elderly people obviously present ethical challenges, particularly in the case of those suffering from dementia. The care provider participants in this study expressed frustration and feelings of powerlessness. It is possible to understand their experiences in terms of Habermas’s theory of modern society and the concept of the system’s colonization of the life world. (shrink)
Anthropology combines two quite different enterprises: the ethnographic study of particular people in particular places and the theorizing about the human species. As such, anthropology is part of cognitive science in that it contributes to the unitary theoretical aim of understanding and explaining the behavior of the animal species Homo sapiens. This article draws on our own research experience to illustrate that cooperation between anthropology and the other sub-disciplines of cognitive science is possible and fruitful, but it must proceed from (...) the recognition of anthropology’s unique epistemology and methodology. (shrink)
In contemporary liberal ethics patient autonomy is often interpreted as the right to self-determination: when it comes to treatment decisions, the patient is given the right to give or withhold informed consent. This paper joins in the philosophical and ethical criticism of the liberal interpretation as it does not regard patient autonomy as a right, rule or principle, but rather as a practice. Patient autonomy, or so I will argue, is realised in the concrete activities of day-to-day health care, in (...) the material and technological context of care, in arrangements of health care institutions, in the physical training of people with disabilities, as well as in the concrete activities of care-giving. This move from conversations in the consultation room to other sites and situations in the practice of care takes seriously the empirical reality of medical care and intends to show that patient autonomy is practically realised in a much richer and more creative way than most ethical theory seems to assume. (shrink)
The doctor patient relationship starts with a story. Doctors' notes, a patient's chart, the recommendations of ethics committees and insurance justifications all hinge on written and verbal narrative interaction. The "practice" of narrative profoundly affects decision making, patient health and treatment and the everyday practice of medicine. In this edited collection, the contributors provide conceptual foundations, practical guidelines and theoretical considerations central to the practice of narrative ethics.
Goal setting is an important professional method and one of the key concepts that structure a practical field such as physical rehabilitation. However, the actual use of goals in rehabilitation practice is much less straightforward than the general acceptance of the method suggests as goals are frequently unattained, modified or contested. In this paper, I will argue that the difficulties of goal setting in day-to-day medical practice can be understood by unravelling the normative assumptions of goal setting, in this case (...) three different tensions that come along with it. First, goals are developed for a future state that may require activities that clash with necessities of the present situation. Second, professionals in clinical rehabilitation centres elaborate goals for an environment that differs in terms of spatial and social characteristics from the environment in the centre, where people train for the accomplishment of goals. Finally, goal setting requires active patient participation and individual control that sometimes appears impossible, unrealistic, and undesirable. I will describe how professionals deal with these tensions in a creative and dynamic way. With my articulation of the assumptions of goal setting, I hope to contribute to the self-reflection of rehabilitation practitioners as well as to theoretical discussions of goal setting in contexts other than rehabilitation. (shrink)
In this paper, I consider the claim that a corporation cannot be held to be morally responsible unless it is a person. First, I argue that this claim is ambigious. Person flags three different but related notions: metaphysical person, moral agent, moral person. I argue that, though one can make the claim that corporates are metaphysical persons, this claim is only marginally relevant to the question of corporate moral responsibility. The central question which must be answered in discussions of corporate (...) moral responsibility is whether corporations are moral agents or moral persons. I argue that, though we can make a case for saying corporations are moral agents, they are not moral persons, and hence, we can hold them responsible. In addition, we need not treat them the way we would be obligated to treat a moral person; we needn't have the same scruples about holding a corporation morally responsible as we would a moral person. (shrink)
Proposing that the interaction between reader and literature involves four “modes of textual engagement” — recognition, enchantment, knowledge, and shock — The Uses of Literature bridges the gap between literary theory and common-sense beliefs about why we read literature.
Our businesses, policies, and lifestyles cause unexamined consequences for other people and other living beings, and exact sweeping destruction on the very ecosystems which support all life, including our own. A major factor contributing to this destructive behavior is the anthropocentric character of the dominant Western world view, which conceives of the nonhuman living world as apart from and less important than the human world, and which conceptualizes nonhuman nature—including animals, plants, ecological systems, the land, and the atmosphere—as inert, silent, (...) passive, and valuable only for its worth as a resource for human consumption. This anthropocentric conceptual framework is constructed, transmitted, and reproduced in the realm of discourse, in all of the modes and avenues through which we make and express cultural meaning. We need to make explicit the ways that mainstream Western and American discourse promotes anthropocentrism and masks, denies, or denigrates interdependence, and we need to find ways to reformulate and reframe our discouse if we are to produce the sort of ecological consciousness that will be essential for creating a sustainable future. (shrink)
As third wave feminist philosophers attending graduate schools in different parts of the country, we decided to use our e-mail discussion as the format for presenting our thinking on the subject of third wave feminism. Our dialogue takes us through the subjects of postmodernism, the relationship between theory and practice, the generation gap, and the power relations associated with feminist philosophy as an established part of the academy.
We investigate what drives responsible investment of European pension funds. Pension funds are institutional investors who assure the income of part of the population for a long period of time. Increasingly, stakeholders hold pension funds accountable for the non-financial consequences of their investments and many funds have engaged in responsible investing. However, it appears that there is a wide difference between pension funds in this respect. We investigate what determines pension funds’ responsible investments on the basis of a survey of (...) more than 250 pension funds in 15 European countries in 2010. We use multinomial logistic regression and find that especially legal origin of the country, ownership of the pension fund and fund size-related variables are to be associated with pension funds′ responsible investment. For fund size, we establish a curvilinear relationship; especially the smallest and largest pension funds in the sample tend to engage with responsible investing. (shrink)
We welcome the critical appraisal of the database used by the behavioral sciences, but we suggest that the authors' differentiation between variable and universal features is ill conceived and that their categorization of non-WEIRD populations is misleading. We propose a different approach to comparative research, which takes population variability seriously and recognizes the methodological difficulties it engenders.
In this paper, I survey liberal and communitarian defenses of privacy, paying particular attention to defenses of privacy in the workplace. I argue that liberalism cannot explain all our of intuitions about the wrongness of workplace invasions of privacy. Communitarianism, on the other hand, is able to account for these intuitions.
About 2 million minor children in the U.S. have at least one parent incarcerated for criminal offenses. There are about 33,000 undocumented persons detained by Immigration and Customs Enforcement in jails and federal detention centers around the country, and 79% of the minor children of these detainees are U.S. citizens. There are few government programs that measure and respond to the harm caused to these children by the incarceration and detention of their parents, and the negative effects on these children (...) are largely ignored in public policy debates about incarceration and immigration detention. I argue that we have an obligation to these children based on the special status of children, the harm caused to children by the arrest, detention and incarceration of their parents, current incarceration and detention policies even in the presence of alternatives that would, on balance, create less harm. (shrink)
The doctrine of double effect has a firm, respected position within Roman Catholic medical ethics. In addition, public debate often incorporates this doctrine when determining the acceptability of certain actions. This essay examines and assesses the application of this doctrine to end-of-life decisions. National Catholic Bioethics Quarterly 11.1 : 99–119.