Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Caring SelfThe Work Experiences of Home Care Aides$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Clare L. Stacey

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801449857

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801449857.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM Cornell University Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.cornell.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of Cornell University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in Cornell for personal use. date: 30 June 2022

The Rewards of Caring

The Rewards of Caring

(p.85) 3 The Rewards of Caring
The Caring Self

Clare L. Stacey

Cornell University Press

This chapter discusses the functional and relational autonomy found by home care aides that allow them to engage in emotional labor “on their own terms.” Aides also find dignity in the fictive kinship bonds formed with clients and their families, a factor that works in tandem with autonomy to lay the foundation for the caring self. Aides construct the caring self by engaging in three types of “identity talk”: professing care as natural and innate, emphasizing service to others, and marking boundaries between themselves and “uncaring” others. The chapter also makes the case that social locations of race, class, and gender are crucial to the development of the caring self. For aides of color, particularly African American aides, experiences of discrimination on the job (usually from clients) profoundly affect the way these workers experience the caring self and narrate their care. Nonnative-born aides from Mexico, the Philippines, and Latin America experience their care slightly differently and they possess superior caregiving skills due to their racial or ethnic backgrounds. Rather than viewing these differences as somehow essential or part of individual or group-level disposition, the chapter concludes that all aides construct a caring self on the job, but that this identity varies by social location in notable ways.

Keywords:   home care aides, home care, caregivers, caregiving, autonomy, caring self

Cornell Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.