IN DEFENCE OF CAREGIVING
Neoliberalism, Care Ethics, and Graphic Medicine
Neoliberalism’s generic propensity to glorify human independence and autonomy overlooks the inevitable vulnerabilities and the concomitant dependencies. Further, idealising such disembodied conceptions marginalises interdependence, relationality, and the ubiquity of care. Neoliberal tendencies, which belittle the socio-political and cultural importance of care, are countered by the ethics of care philosophy. Defending humans as relational entities, the care ethics offers philosophical credence and legitimacy to dependencies caused due to old age, illness, and impairment. Against such a background, graphic somatographies play a distinctive and productive role in representing the inevitability of interdependence and care caused by illness. Drawing theoretical insights from Martin Buber, Arthur Kleinman, Joan C Tronto, and others, this article examines how caregiving provides alternative ways of living for ill/disabled people and their caregivers and shows the significance of caregiving against the backdrop of neoliberal policies. This article also presents how the interdisciplinary field of graphic medicine fortifies the inevitability of dependency and care as an embodied practice.
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