“Care ethics emphasizes the value of fostering relationships, paying as much attention to personal details as abstract principles, and recognizing the ethical importance of affection and care for others” (Waller, 2008, p. 122). Based on this definition, there is no need for care ethics to be defined as “feminine” ethics. If we label care ethics as “feminine,” we deny men as caring individuals who care about relationships and “the ethical importance of affection and care for others.” Men are capable of demonstrating care ethics and women are capable of being uncaring.
If we label care ethics as feminine, we pigeonhole women. Women are capable of reasoning and making decisions regarding ethics without being “assigned” a platform. Jean Grimshaw believes “there is no autonomous realm of female values, or of female activities which can generate ‘alternative’ values to those of the public sphere; and any conception of a ‘female ethic’ which depends on these ideas cannot, I think, be a viable one” (cited in Waller, 2008, p. 129).
Women are not the only ones who care. I do think this is a stereotype our society continues to perpetuate. There are plenty of sensitive men. I do think we have made progress in this area, because men can be sensitive now and it's culturally acceptable.
Certainly true that we need the equality of opportunity highlighted in post #1. There are also ther situations where a person can find themselves castigated for not wishing to accept the 'traditional' roles: not all women want to be mothers, some men are best suited to be homemakers. Gender needs to be one of a range of factors considered and not sweeping judgement of a feminine care ethic.
I totally agree. Just as I want a nurse, for example, to have both compassion and strength (as well as knowledge and experience and a million other genderless attributes), I want all of us to have them. What a perfect combination, and it can be found in both men and women. I want those qualities in my doctor or lawyer or preacher...any profession that matters would benefit from those two key components. One is often classified as more feminine, the other more masculine, but together they create a human being who is likely to get things done without being a bulldozer.
I absolutely agree with access teacher. We still have people in this society who think some jobs would be better performed by men as they are naturally built to have more muscle mass. By the same token we still have people who think some jobs should be held by women as they are more prone to show emotion. If a man steps into that stereotyped role he is sometimes thought of as gay. If a woman steps into that stereotyped role she's sometimes thought of as butch. No roles should be considered primarily female or male.
I actually agree with this statement. We are all too prone in our society to stereotype jobs and roles by gender, and then if there is, for example, a male midwife, we assume that he is gay because he does not fit the male masculine norm. It is therefore important as far as possible to erase such gender-based man-made distinctions to allow for equality of opportunity - for both women and men.