Reflections on the Value of Vulnerability: Towards a Relational Understanding of Vulnerability with Ethics of Care
Vulnerability is an inalienable aspect of human existence. In spite of the fact that sufficient groundwork has been done on the notion of vulnerability, it is to be noted that until now, vulnerability has typically been conceived as a negative condition relating to dependency, weakness, fragility, passivity and exploitation. Contrary to this, this paper attempts to re-consider the concept of vulnerability along positive lines by principally focusing upon the moral and ontological roots of vulnerability by employing the Feminist Ethics of Care model. The exponents of Care Ethics extend a normative version of vulnerability with prime emphasis on two aspects, namely, vulnerability as a compositional form of relationality and responsibility. The question that will be addressed in this paper is, ‘How can we construct a progressive and value-laden approach to vulnerability by employing the principles of an Ethic of Care?’ Fundamentally, it will be argued that between the individual and the universal, lies relationships that have been overlooked while discussing the notion of vulnerability. This study therefore, aims to unlock the moral dynamic of vulnerability with ontological implications. Subsequently, an idea of Shared human vulnerability will be authentically introduced in the paper which will help us to think about the power of vulnerability with the existential genesis of Care Ethics.