The chapter explores the prospects of a radically revitalised ethics of community for social work from a communitarian perspective, drawing on the influential writings of Jean Luc Nancy. It focuses on how community - in its making and renewal - as ‘being-in-common’ can offer more meaningful engagement with service users if social work attends to and extends care, inclusion and prevention from an ethical standpoint. It asks how we can appeal to an ethics that is not always gestural but can have significant impacts at a national and international level. The chapter offers a critique of prevailing liberal conceptions of social work ethics considering COVID-19 and calls for a ‘great reset’ by our international professional organisations, such as IFSW and IASSW.


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Webb, S. 2023, 'Communovirus: ethical community for social work in a ‘post’-COVID world', Post-Pandemic Welfare and Social Work: Re-imagining the New Normal, pp. 15-27. https://doi.org/10.4324/9781003416210-2

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Last updated: 02 August 2023
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