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Recognizing Family 

Recognizing Family
Chapter:
Recognizing Family
Author(s):

Janice McLaughlin

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190624880.003.0004
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date: 05 June 2020

This chapter seeks to explore some of the complexities involved in recognizing family and draws from a range of work interrogating what is meant by the term. It does so to support the bioethical concern with the importance of relationships to selfhood, of which family is a key form, while also attesting to the politics and risks of such a move. The overall argument is that we need to take care around the recognition dynamics involved in advocating that particular kinds of relationships are important to acknowledge in healthcare. This argument is worked through by exploring two important terms in the debates on family, vulnerability and value, and by layering a sociological account of both into their role in validating a relational/family approach to selfhood and healthcare ethics.

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