he failed to accommodate the needs of all in a way that preserved the harmony between himself and Susan, Susan and her family, and Susan and her colleagues and clients. The Care Voice and the Justice Voice Now that we've seen how the care perspective works, let's turn to a brief history. Carol Gilligan’s pioneering work, In a Different Voice, was the first systematic attempt to describe the voice of care and to distinguish it from what she called the voice of justice. Since then, psychologists and philosophers have been busy elucidating the central concepts and testing for various aspects of the two voices. Gilligan began by responding to the views of Lawrence Kohlberg, who developed a theory about how people reason and develop morally. viii His theory of moral reasoning posited that people reason morally by applying principles to cases, thus yielding judgments about what they ought to do. Moral development, on Kohlberg’s account, is cognitive and proceeds to progressively more general principles, with ideal moral development culminating in principles that are universal and binding on all persons. Carol Gilligan noted that Kohlberg’s subjects, though culturally diverse, were all male. She began to apply his tests to female subjects of various ages. Her conclusion was that some people, notably females, often used a different reasoning strategy than that described by Kohlberg and that they developed by moving through a different set of stages. Gilligan theorized that some of her subjects appealed to an ethic of care. This involves a through understanding of the context, and a willingness to balance the needs of 9
self and other in a way that preserves both. For Gilligan, moral development was both cognitive and emotional--the growth in the ability to see the situation from the perspective of self and other and to care about one’s self as well as others. She illustrated the differences in moral reasoning with two eleven year olds, Jake and Amy. Jake and Amy are both given Kohlberg’s Heinz dilemma to solve. Heinz is a druggist who has invented a drug to combat cancer. Heinz’s wife needs the drug but Heinz does not have the money to buy it and the druggist will not give it to him. The children are asked whether Heinz should steal the drug. Jake quickly answers affirmatively and defends his answer by appealing to the relative importance of life over property. Amy begins by saying that it depends. She points out that all the things that could go wrong if Heinz steals the drug--perhaps he will get caught and go to jail and his wife will be worse off. She suggests instead that Heinz and the druggist should sit down and work it out to everyone’s satisfaction. Jake fits easily into Kohlberg’s schemata: he imagines himself in Heinz’s position and applies a principle that quickly yields an answer. He does not need any more information about Heinz, the druggist, Heinz’s wife, etc. Amy, on the other hand, is
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- Ethics, Kohlberg's stages of moral development, Carol Gilligan