Lavender McKittrick-Sweitzer

Lavender McKittrick-SweitzerVisiting Instructor of Philosophy

I am primarily interested in political philosophy, with a focus on feminist perspectives, public reason, and global justice. My research is currently focused on a concept I call care exploitation. Care exploitation, basically put, occurs when one fails to respect the dignity of another that has caring sentiments by taking advantage of their vulnerability which arises from caring. Examples of those subjected to the structural and interpersonal care exploitation include public school teachers, US soldiers, mothers, and domestic care workers. In my work I suggest traditional theories of exploitation fail to properly capture this pervasive phenomenon, and offer an account of both interpersonal and structural care exploitation. I also consider who bears responsibility, and how we ought to rectify or prevent it moving forward.

In my teaching my students’ capacity to flourish is of the utmost importance to me, which informs my primary goal as an instructor: to motivate and support my students in such a way that they can realize this capacity in both their philosophical studies and in life. I work towards this goal by empowering students to embrace self-ownership of their education, fostering an environment where they feel comfortable offering their diverse perspectives, making clear my faith in their abilities, and showing a genuine concern for their well-being.

When I’m not teaching or writing, I enjoy reading, spending time in nature, baking, and sewing.

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