The ethics of care: a feminist virtue ethics of care for healthcare practitioners

J Med Philos. 1998 Apr;23(2):131-52. doi: 10.1076/jmep.


In this paper I seek to distinguish a feminist virtue ethics of care from (1) justice ethics, (2) narrative ethics, (3) care ethics and (4) virtue ethics. I also connect this contemporary discussion of what makes a virtue ethics of care feminist to eighteenth and nineteenth century debates about male, female, and human virtue. In conclude that by focusing on issues related to gender--primarily those related to the systems, structures, and ideologies that create and sustain patterns of male domination and female subordination--we can begin to appreciate that true care and bona-fide virtue can flourish only in societies that treat all persons with equal respect and consideration.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Empathy*
  • Ethical Analysis*
  • Ethical Theory*
  • Ethics*
  • Ethics, Medical*
  • Female
  • Feminism*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Moral Development
  • Moral Obligations
  • Morals*
  • Narration*
  • Philosophy
  • Social Justice
  • Social Values
  • Virtues*