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Ethics of CareCritical advances in international perspective$
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Tula Brannelly, Lizzie Ward, and Nicki Ward

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781447316510

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781447316510.001.0001

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Privilege and responsibility in the South African context

Privilege and responsibility in the South African context

(p.83) Seven Privilege and responsibility in the South African context
Ethics of Care

Vivienne Bozalek

Policy Press

Drawing from the concept of ‘privileged irresponsibility’, this chapter argues that the notions of privilege and responsibility are important aspects of the political ethic of care to consider both from a contemporary and historical perspective. This is particularly true, but not limited to, contexts such as South Africa, which as a colonial country provided many advantages for white settlers, formalising these privileges legislatively under apartheid in 1948. The chapter examines the notions of privilege and responsibility in the historical and current South African context, focusing on examples of how privileged responsibility has been maintained across social markers of race, class and gender and how it may be possible to challenge these conditions. Historically and currently, attention to privilege and responsibilities regarding privilege are key to considerations of developing a more equitable and just society.

Keywords:   privilege, responsibility, privileged irresponsibility, dualisms, South Africa, social work curriculum

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