Mother Knows Best? [chapter]

Rebecca Wilson
2020 Troubling Motherhood  
This chapter utilizes a critical maternal theory to examine rape politics and, particularly, children born from forced sex, focusing on the 2017 UK "rape clause." The UK Conservative new tax credit policy limits parents to claim and receive benefits for only two children, as part of new austerity measures, except under extenuating circumstances, for example, if a child had been "conceived without consent." This is colloquially known as the "rape clause." By unpacking this policy, this chapter
more » ... icy, this chapter highlights the tension between the state, as the patriarchal caregiver, and the citizen, constructed as an inadequate carer. These patterns of power are visible through the lens of critical maternal ethics. This lens's strength in moral epistemology, obtained by valuing the virtues of care, is crucial in communicating how these moral boundaries are constructed and permitted through power hierarchies. Therefore, this chapter argues that a critical maternal theory can act as resistance against masculine policies by uncovering these moral boundaries that legitimize rape politics, such as the "rape clause."
doi:10.1093/oso/9780190939182.003.0008 fatcat:73qxuschnvh6jevp4ivvhdpgky