Hypatia 31 (1):156-170 (2016)

Authors
Laura Kane
Worcester State University
Abstract
Political philosophy presents a static conception of childhood as a state of lack, a condition where intellectual, physical, and moral capacities are undeveloped. This view, referred to by David Kennedy as the deficit view of childhood, is problematic because it systematically disparages certain universal features of humanity—dependency and growth—and incorrectly characterizes them as features of childhood only. Thus there is a strict separation between childhood and adulthood because adults are characterized as fully autonomous agents who have reached the end of their moral and cognitive development. I argue that this view is mistaken, and limits both the developmental abilities of adults and ongoing moral development within an organized state. I propose that we view dependency as a human condition. By doing so, children and adults form the kind of relationship with one another that encourages the growth and development of our moral sense in both childhood and adulthood
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DOI 10.1111/hypa.12214
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Leviathan.Thomas Hobbes - 1651 - Harmondsworth, Penguin.

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