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Restorative nursing: toward a philosophy of postmodern punishment.

Gadow, Sally
June 4, 2015

Source: (2003) Nursing Philosophy. 4:161-7.

Nursing practice in correctional settings is ethically unique. Its premise
is the contradiction between causing harm (the purpose of imprisonment)
and acting for patients’ good (the purpose of health care). I
describe three ethical regions in which correctional nurses can practise,
based on different philosophies: punishment as retribution, as rationality,
and as paradox. Retribution and rationality resolve the ethical contradiction
by relegating offenders to intractable otherness. Restorative
nursing based on paradox is an oppositional practice that preserves the
contradiction, making engagement possible between prisoner and
nurse. Endorsement by nursing of one of the three philosophies of
punishment could redefine care for the entire profession. Author’s abstract.


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