Call for Papers
THE POLITICAL ECONOMY OF CARE: GLOBAL AND LOCAL CHAINS
A longstanding criticism of mainstream political philosophy centres on the denial of care work and the assertion of an autarkic, self-sufficient subject. However, in addition to this (rather academic) criticism by care ethics, an extensive body of literature has emerged from lived experiences of political and social struggles, primarily from feminists (of colour) that put friendship, love, and coalition-building center stage (Ahmed, Anzaldúa, Black Lives Matter, Care Collective, Combahee River Collective, Dalla Costa, Federici, hooks, Lorde, Precarias a la deriva, Puig Della Casa, Sandoval, etc.). This crisis of care reveals and acknowledges multiple dimensions of structural, relational, and interpersonal violence and oppression at the intersections of class, gender, and race.
The Covid-19 pandemic highlights once again that care work in most countries is rendered almost exclusively by women who are poorly paid and insufficiently valued for their labour. While some attempt to juggle job and family responsibilities at the expense of their own mental and physical health, others risk criminalization and destitution due to insecure residency status or lack of permission to work. Indeed, the chains of care have increasingly acquired a transnational character and exploit the indentured labour of those who cross borders to care for others. Take, for example, women from the Philippines and other south-east Asian countries who provide cleaning services and take care of children elsewhere in the world in order to afford the nourishment and schooling of their own; or, care work for the elderly and sick in western Europe that is done by eastern European women who rarely get to see their own relatives. Whether paid or unpaid, care work is disproportionately carried out by racialized and gendered groups in precarious positions. Finally, in an attempt to protect their own populations and to compensate for the austerity of public healthcare provision, so-called developed countries actively recruit medical professionals from former or current colonies, who then staff hospitals and risk their lives during the pandemic while separated from those care networks that sustain their work. The acquisition and accumulation of PPE and vaccines further exacerbate global inequities in public healthcare.
Furthermore, the concept of care extends beyond human beings, to non-human entities such as the environment (Barad, de la Bellacasa, Haraway, Stengers) and ways of conducting research (Dombrowski). In light of all these discussions, we deem it necessary and timely to ask:
- Should care be more central to philosophy and contemporary philosophizing?
- What are the political, economic, and social premises and impact of the global-local nexus of care?
- How does the systematic withholding of care from some groups of society follow from neoliberal variants of capitalism that have exploited racialized and feminised care workers since its inception?
- What is the logic of the non-caring or care-less rationality that underpins such exploitation, and does it also motivate the exploitation of our environment and the cosmos?
- What is fair or just access to healthcare?
- Will decent care be undermined by the growing power of algorithms in healthcare?
- What kind of philosophical toolbox do we need to adequately answer these questions?
- Can philosophy, or a philosophical approach, ask better questions to situate care at the centre of theoretical and practical inquiry?
Krisis invites you to contribute to this special issue about care by interrogating our existing social and political structures of care and by reconceiving and building on radical alternatives. Please send your abstract for a paper to Krisis by 1 May 2021. We will let you know if the abstract has been accepted not long thereafter. Then the usual peer review phase follows.
We understand that many researchers face unexpected delays due to the Covid-19 contingencies, including home-schooling, care duties and increased teaching load. If you would like to submit an abstract but are unable to do so in time, please do contact us to discuss an alternative timeline.
Submission abstract: May 1st 2021 (extended deadline)
Full paper: September 1st 2021
Publication: Issue 1 of 2022
Abstracts can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org