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Against the odds: strategies, achievements and challenges of nursing on a global scale

Against the odds: strategies, achievements and challenges of nursing on a global scale

Historia, Ciencias, Saude--Manguinhos 15(1): 13-28

This essay focuses upon the transnational history of Professional Nursing. Women leaders across the Atlantic were behind major associative movements touched by feminist and libertarian ideas. Since the 1890s, this crisscrossing of actors and ideas defies any simple labeling of'national models'. This paper argues against the existence of a 'French model', as an alternative to the ideas and practices proposed by the 'Rockefeller nurses' in Rio de Janeiro during the 1920s. Instead, the roots of professionalism at that time could only be sown by the American nurses, who breathed from a truly transnational debate. At that time of intense ideological agitation about doctrines and best practices, the International Council of Nurses (ICN) pointed in the direction of increasing autonomy, associational life, and anti-patriarchal ideologies. This international process, often discontinuous and contradictory, stressed an ethics of caring and stimulated an ethos of professional autonomy among nurses on a global scale.

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Accession: 051409952

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PMID: 19241671

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