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Abortion  

D. Lynn Jackson

Until the 19th century, abortion law was nonexistent and abortion was not seen as a moral issue. However, by the turn of the 20th century, abortion was legally defined and controlled in ... More

Advocacy  

Robert L. Schneider, Lori Lester, and Julia Ochieng

Social work advocacy is “the exclusive and mutual representation of a client(s) or a cause in a forum, attempting to systematically influence decision-making in an unjust or unresponsive ... More

Civil Rights  

William L. Pollard

Civil rights are rooted in the English laws that tried to protect citizens from abuses by the state. As the United States matured as a democracy, so did its citizens. Since World War II, ... More

Civil Society  

Kristin M. Ferguson

Considerable definitional vagueness exists regarding civil society, in part due to the concept's long history and multiple underlying schools of thought. Issues of multiculturalism and ... More

Consumer Rights  

Donald M. Linhorst

Consumers of health and mental health services are afforded numerous legal rights. Broad categories of rights include self-determination, access to health information, protections for ... More

Culturally Competent Practice  

Doman Lum

This entry defines cultural competence and culturally competent practice and focuses on cultural awareness, knowledge acquisition, skill development, and inductive learning as key ... More

Empowerment Practice  

Ruth J. Parsons and Jean East

The concept of empowerment has deep roots in social work practice. Building upon the work of empowerment theorists of the 1980s and 1990s and applied broadly in the 2000s [Itzhaky and York ... More

Historiography  

Leslie Leighninger

This entry discusses some topics in social work and social welfare history. It covers different approaches to that history, such as an emphasis on social control functions of social ... More

Human Needs: Overview  

Michael A. Dover

Human need and related concepts such as basic needs have long been part of the implicit conceptual foundation for social work theory, practice, and research. However, while the published ... More

Human Rights  

Joseph M. Wronka

At the heart of social work, human rights are a set of guiding principles that are interdependent and have implications for macro, mezzo, and micro policy and practice. They can be best ... More

Peace  

Charles D. Cowger

This entry discusses the relationship of war and peace to social work practice. The historic and current mandate for social workers to work for peace is presented. The inevitable tie of ... More

Political Ideology and Social Welfare  

Mimi Abramovitz

Political ideologies shape public policy debates as well as the social policy strategies developed to address “social problems.” The clashes among long-standing political ... More

Political Interventions  

Megan Meyer

Since the Progressive Era, social workers have played important roles in political struggles for social justice. They have criticized, designed, and implemented an array of social policies ... More

Progressive Social Work  

Rosemary Barbera, Mary Bricker-Jenkins, and Barbara Hunter Randall Joseph

Since the beginning of the profession, progressive social work has been characterized by a lived commitment to practice dedicated to advancing human rights and social and economic justice. ... More

Racism  

Selena T. Rodgers

Racism is pervasive, endemic, and historically rooted in systematic assumptions inherent in superiority based on race and requires the critical attention of all social workers. The ... More

Restorative Justice  

Katherine van Wormer

This article defines restorative justice and describes the models most relevant to social work. These include victim–offender conferencing (sometimes incorrectly referred to as mediation), ... More

Rights-Based Framework and Social Work  

Margaret Lombe

The past few years have seen a surge in effort to incorporate rights-based approaches in programming. The rise has been spearheaded by growing awareness that human rights may be the most ... More

Sexual Orientation  

William J. Hall

Sexual orientation is a multidimensional phenomenon involving a person’s sexual attraction, sexual behavior, and sexual orientation identity. Sexual orientation patterns may remain ... More

Social Empathy  

Elizabeth A. Segal

Online publication date:
Aug 2014
This entry defines and explains the concept and trait of social empathy and the relationship to interpersonal empathy. Both concepts are explained using the latest cognitive neuroscience ... More

Social Enterprise  

Rukshan Fernando

Social enterprise is a management practice that integrates principles of private enterprise with social sector goals and objectives. Social enterprise is a relatively new type of social ... More

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