This new edition of Eva Feder Kittay’s feminist classic, Love’s Labor, explores how theories of justice and morality must be reconfigured when intersecting with care and dependency, and the failure of policy towards women who engage in care work. The work is hailed as a major contribution to the development of an ethics of care.

Where society is viewed as an association of equal and autonomous persons, the work of caring for dependents figures neither in political theory nor in social policy. While some women have made many gains, equality continues to elude many others, as in large measure, social institutions fail to take into account the dependency of childhood, illness, disability and frail old age and fail to adequately support those who care for dependents. Using a narrative of her experiences caring for her disabled daughter, Eva Feder Kittay discusses the relevance of her analysis of dependency to significant cognitive disability. She explores the significance of dependency work by analyzing John Rawls' influential liberal theory and two examples of public policy—welfare reform and family leave—to show how theory and policy fail women when they miss the centrality of dependency to issues of justice. This second edition has updated material on care workers, her adult disabled daughter and key changes in welfare reform.

Using a mix of personal reflection and political argument, this new edition of a classic text will continue to be an innovative and influential contribution to the debate on searching for greater equality and justice for women.

Love’s Labor has spoken to audiences around the world and has had an impact on readers from many countries and in many disciplines: philosophy, sociology, disability studies, nursing. It has been required and supplementary reading on many undergraduate courses on Ethics, Feminist Ethics, Gender and Religious Ethics, Political Theory, Bioethics and Disability Studies. It has been translated into Italian, Japanese and Korean.

chapter |6 pages

Introduction to the Second Edition

chapter |20 pages

Introduction to the First Edition

part I|2 pages

Love’s Labor

part II|10 pages

Political Liberalism and Human Dependency

chapter 3|17 pages

The Presuppositions of Equality

part III|2 pages

Some Mother’s Child

chapter 5|30 pages

Policy and a Public Ethic of Care

chapter 7|21 pages

Maternal Thinking with a Difference

chapter |7 pages