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Abstract
In this article I wish to show how care ethics puts forward a fundamental critique on the ideal of independency in human life without thereby discounting autonomy as a moral value altogether. In care ethics, a relational account of autonomy is developed instead. Because care ethics is sometimes criticized in the literature as hopelessly vague and ambiguous, I shall begin by elaborating on how care ethics and its place in ethical theory can be understood. I shall stipulate a definition of care ethics as a moral perspective or orientation from which ethical theorizing can take place. This will mean that care ethics is more a stance from which we can theorize ethically, than ready-made theory in itself. In conceiving care ethics in this way, it becomes possible to make clear that, for instance, a moral concept of autonomy is not abandoned, but instead is given a particular place and interpretation. In the final part of this article I will show how ‘relational autonomy’ can be applied fruitfully in the practice of psychiatric care
Keywords autonomy  care ethics  compassionate interference  ethical theory  psychiatry
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Reprint years 2004
DOI 10.1023/A:1012048907443
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References found in this work BETA

Respect and Care: Toward Moral Integration.Robin S. Dillon - 1992 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 22 (1):105 - 132.
Care: From Theory to Orientation and Back.Margaret Olivia Little - 1998 - Journal of Medicine and Philosophy 23 (2):190 – 209.

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