Radical Care und die Zukunft des Wohlfahrtstaats: Konturen einer paradoxen Politik der Sorge

Mike Laufenberg


In the face of a global crisis of social reproduction, welfare states have consistently
failed to produce social security for the majority of the world’s
population. In this context, collective and grassroots practices of radical
care have gained meaning as non-state strategies for enduring an unequal
and insecure world. Through the lens of welfare state theory, this paper explores
both the emancipatory potentials as well as the structural limits and
pitfalls of radical care. Its focus lies in contemporary socio-material articulations
of communities of care/‘care-citizenship’ and their paradoxical relations
with the welfare state. This paper seeks to avoid the reductive
dichotomy of communities of care vs. the state that it identifies in the approach
taken by many protagonists as well as critics of radical care. To this
end, it conceptualizes a paradoxical politics of care-citizenship that is not
radically opposed to but rather is engaged in a strategic tension with state
institutions, a means of contributing to a democratic and solidary renewal
of the welfare state from below.



DOI: https://doi.org/10.6094/behemoth.2020.13.2.1048