Et spor af nye idealer

Anne Kristine Kongerslev & Julia Gornitzka

Studenteropgave: Speciale


Abstract In this thesis we examine how the Danish care worker defines herself as a professional, and how the ideals of the social worker influence her practices. We combine a social constructivist perspective with a practice theoretic perspective and from a bottom-up view we carry out 9 interviews with social workers and ask them to tell their different stories about how to be a good care worker. We also use the main book from the Care Worker Program to discuss the different ideals of the care worker. We look into research on care, already present on the subject, to form the questions in the interviews, and to carry out an analysis on the interviews. Research on the changes of the field counts amongst others Karen Christensen (2005) and Betina Dybbroe (2006). To define and understand the relation between care worker and client we also look into research from Joan Tronto (1993), Kari Wærness (1989) and Anne Liveng (2007). To examine the practice of the social worker we are inspired by Pierre Bourdieu and his concept of Habitus (1990). A concept of habitus in consistent to the female care worker is presented by Tine Rask Eriksen (1995), the Care Habitus. We conclude that the care worker constructs a very altruistic ideal about how to be professional. The main book from the program shows the same thing and stresses the importance of knowledge that comes to form from social and personal experience. The professional and personal knowledge is combined in the book and in the narratives of the agents. This has an influence on how the care worker gains knowledge which she explains mainly comes from experience. The young and newly educated care worker therefore is less valued than the more experienced care worker. The more experienced care worker positions herself in addition to the young with less experience. The young and less experienced care worker constructs a different ideal of being a professional care worker. Her story is about being professional, not from personal skills, but from professional skills. As she understands herself as a professional, it means that she also gains better opportunities to come up with solutions to the problems that appear in practice. She has professional tools to use, and her success in the job relies on her professional skills.

UddannelserKommunikation, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Kandidat
Udgivelsesdato17 feb. 2009
VejledereSanne Knudsen


  • omsorg
  • professionalitet
  • sosu
  • idealer