Vulnerability and the Legal Organization of Work

by Martha Albertson Fineman,

Series: Gender in Law, Culture, and Society

Subject categories
ISBNs
  • 9781138698604
  • 9781315518565
  • 9781315518558

This book uses the concepts of vulnerability and resilience to analyze the situation of individuals and institutions in the context of the employment relationship. It is based on the premise that both employer and employee are vulnerable to various social, economic, and political forces, although differently so. It demonstrates how in responding to those complementary institutional relationships of employer and employee the state unequally and inequitably favors employers over employees.

Several chapters included in this collection also consider how the state shapes, creates and maintains through law the social identities of employer and employee and how that legal regime operates as the allocation of power and privilege. This unique and fundamental role of the state in defining the employment relationship profoundly affects the respective abilities and degree of resiliency of actual employers and employees.

Other chapters explore how attention to the respective vulnerability and resilience of those who do and those who direct work in assessing the employment relationship can raise fundamental questions of social justice and suggest new avenues for critical engagement with labor and employment law. Collectively, these pieces articulate a framework for imaging what would constitute an appropriately "Responsive State" in the employment context and how those interested in social justice might begin to use the concepts of vulnerability and resilience in their arguments.

  • Taylor and Francis; July 2017
  • ISBN: 9781315518565
  • Edition: 1
  • Read online, or download in secure PDF or secure EPUB format
  • Title: Vulnerability and the Legal Organization of Work
  • Series: Gender in Law, Culture, and Society
  • Author: Martha Albertson Fineman (ed.); Jonathan W. Fineman (ed.)
  • Imprint: Routledge
Subject categories
ISBNs
  • 9781138698604
  • 9781315518565
  • 9781315518558

About The Author

Martha Albertson Fineman is Robert W. Woodruff Professor of Law at Emory University. A leading authority on family law and feminist jurisprudence, Fineman is the founding director of the Feminism and Legal Theory Project, an interdisciplinary scholarly project she began at the University of Wisconsin in 1984. Since 2007, she also directs Emory’s Vulnerability and the Human Condition Initiative, an interdisciplinary project housed in the Laney Graduate School. Her scholarly work focuses on various aspects of the legal regulation of intimacy and on the social, cultural, and legal implications of human dependency and vulnerability and includes The Neutered Mother, The Sexual Family and Other Twentieth Century Tragedies (1995) and The Autonomy Myth: A Theory of Dependency (2004).

Jonathan W. Fineman is an Associate Professor at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University’s College of Law. After earning his JD from Columbia University, he practiced law as a business litigator in San Francisco. He writes about employment law and the workplace, focusing on private ordering and contract. He also publishes and speaks about vulnerability theory.