Critical and Philosophical Reflections
Edited by Leah Tomkins
Chapter 13: Through the prism of Sartre: taking care of our existential freedom
This chapter draws on the existential philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre to reconsider the relationship between care, freedom and leadership. Using his famed concepts of bad faith and nothingness, it explores existential freedom as linked to an ethos of caring for oneself and others. For this purpose, it associates notions of holistic care to Sartre’s idea of a productive nothingness that continually obligates caretakers to care not only for our current but also our possible future selves. It shows relational care perspectives as a powerful leadership ethos, through helping people form the mutual support networks needed to overcome our bad faith in a status quo in favour of new and more empowering forms of existence. To this end, it reveals the importance of individually and collectively taking care of our existential freedom.
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