The Complementary Theory and Practice of Jane Addams and George Herbert Mead: Bending Toward Justice
This chapter focuses on the complementary nature of the theory and practice of Jane Addams (1860–1935) and George Herbert Mead (1863–1931). When applied to intractable contemporary problems, the application of their combined insights “bends toward justice.” Both were theorist-activists who embraced a relational and interdependent conception of the self and insisted that, with empathetic understanding, progress toward justice could be incrementally achieved. This approach has contemporary relevance, particularly in today’s polarized society. Our social circles have narrowed, becoming more insular, our political institutions have become more divisive, and the economic gap between the rich and the poor continues to widen. Addams and Mead’s work help us see why these divisions are problematic and suggest possible paths for moving toward more just social, political, and economic arrangements.
Lowe, Barbara J. (2022). "The Complementary Theory and Practice of Jane Addams and George Herbert Mead: Bending Toward Justice." The Oxford Handbook of Jane Addams , C32.P1-C32.N15.
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