Engaging ideas, transforming minds
Engaging ideas, transforming minds
256 pages
6 x 9 inches
August 2013
Print ISBN: 9781551305400
eBook ISBN: 9781551305424
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How can we plan, organize, distribute, and offer care in ways that treat both those who need it and those who provide it with dignity and respect?

Using the example of residential services, Troubling Care: Critical Perspectives on Research and Practices investigates the fractures in our care systems and challenges how caring work is understood in social policy, in academic theory, and among health care providers. In this era defined by government cutbacks and a narrowing sense of collective responsibility, long-term residential care for the elderly and disabled is being undervalued and undermined.

A result of a seven-year interdisciplinary research project-in-progress, this book draws together the work of fourteen leading health researchers, including sociologists, medical practitioners, social workers, policy researchers, cultural theorists, and historians. Using a feminist political economy lens, these scholars explore and challenge the theories, work organization, practices, and state-society relations that have come to shape long-term care.

Troubling Care offers critical perspectives on the often disquieting arena of care provision and proposes alternatives for thinking about and meeting the needs of some of our most vulnerable citizens in ways that go beyond residential care. This book seeks to bridge not only the gaps between disciplines, but also those between theory and practice.


  • takes an interdisciplinary approach, making this work appropriate for courses in a variety of disciplines including sociology, medicine, social work, health policy, cultural studies, and political economy
  • includes the work of fourteen leading health researchers, including sociologists, medical practitioners, social workers, policy researchers, cultural theorists, and historians
  • bridges the gap between theory and practice by incorporating both theoretical research and specific case examples

Related Titles

Table of Contents


Chapter One: The Implications of Conceptualizing Care
Chapter Two: Imagining an Ethos of Care within Policies, Practices, and Philosophy
Chapter Three: Care, Culture, and Creativity: A Disability Perspective on Long-Term Residential Care
Chapter Four: A Gender Politics of Long-Term Residential Care: Towards an Analysis

Chapter Five: Counting Carers in Long-Term Residential Care in Canada
Chapter Six: Work Organization, Care, and Occupational Health and Safety
Chapter Seven: Skills for Care

Chapter Eight: Living Better through Chemistry: Dementia, Long Term Care, and Antipsychotic Medication Use
Chapter Nine: New Technologies and Concepts of Care
Chapter Ten: Balancing the Tensions in Resident-Centred Care

Chapter Eleven: Historical Perspectives on Care the Welfare State: The Rise, Retreat, Return, and Reframing of a Key Concept
Chapter Twelve: Aging in Welfare States in Austere Times: Long-Term Care Reform in Japan and Germany
Chapter Thirteen: Neoliberalism and Official Health Statistics: Towards a Research Agenda


Pat Armstrong

Pat Armstrong is a Distinguished Research Professor of Sociology at York University and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. She is the author of numerous books and articles in health and gender and has held a Canada Health Services Research Foundation/Canadian Institute of Health Research Chair in Health Services.

Labour Pains, Women's Health, Studies in Political Economy, Thinking Women and Health Care Reform in Canada, Troubling Care, Women's Health, Second Edition, Feminism, Political Economy, and the State

Susan Braedley

Dr. Susan Braedley is Assistant Professor with the School of Social Work at Carleton University. Dr. Braedley's research focuses on care, gender, racialization and public policy.


"Everyone, at some point in their lives, will either need or provide care. Since the giving and receiving of care is not currently equitable, a critical examination of the complex issues in long-term care is important. This book helps us to understand the real costs associated with long-term care. Hopefully, it will force us to re-examine how care is conceived and what is considered acceptable, and will open dialogues that lead to changes that enhance care."
—  Lynn Meadows, Department of Community Health Sciences, University of Calgary

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