Asha Bhandary

Assistant Professor
PhD, University of Connecticut, 2011; MA, Stanford University, 2004
258 English-Philosophy Building
Office Hours: 
Wednesday and Friday 11:15-12:45
Research Interests: 

social and political philosophy, feminist ethics, autonomy theory

Dr. Bhandary is a political philosopher and feminist ethicist whose work incorporates the human need for dependency care at the level of the foundational assumptions, premises and concepts in the liberal tradition.  In her published articles, she advances the components of a liberal theory of care - such as a liberal concept of care (in Social Theory and Practice) and a liberal justification to add the need to receive dependency care to the Humean circumstances of justice (in The Journal of Philosophical Research).  In her book project, Freedom to Care, she advances a theory of distributive justice for caregiving arrangements that is structured by the liberal values of autonomy and transparency. It maintains the importance of an abstract understanding of caregiving arrangements with her concept the “arrow of care map” (see also Feminist Philosophy Quarterly) as a way to track distributive inequalities by categories including race, gender, ethnicity, class status. In the forthcoming co-edited volume with Amy R. Baehr, Caring for Liberalism (under contract with Routledge), Bhandary and Baehr bring together new essays that explore how liberal political theory -- in its many guises (contractarian, utilitarian, capabilities-based, perfectionist, comprehensive and political) -- might be modified or transformed to take the fact of dependency on board. Freedom to Care and Caring for Liberalism each take steps towards articulating forms of liberalism that adequately address care in ways that proffer resources to identify and respond to class-based, racial and colonial forms of oppression.

She also collaborates with scholars and practitioners in other disciplines to bring feminist normative theory to applied contexts, for which she draws on her prior professional experience as a consultant to non-profit organizations. She regularly teaches the courses Multiculturalism and Toleration, Rawls’s Moral and Political Philosophy, Matters of Life and Death and Bioethics.

Selected Publications: 


  • Freedom to Care: Liberalism, Dependency Care, and Culture, manuscript under review.

  • Caring for Liberalism: Dependency and Political Theory, co-edited with Amy R. Baehr, Routledge Studies in Contemporary Philosophy series, under contract.


  • Bhandary, A. Forthcoming. Review of The Oxford Handbook of Distributive Justice, edited by Serena Olsaretti (2018), Hypatia Reviews Online.
  • Bhandary, A. Forthcoming. “'Being at home' and minority health,” in Applying Nonideal Theory to Bioethics: Living and Dying in a Nonideal World, eds. Elizabeth Victor and Laura Guidry-Grimes, Springer.
  • Bhandary, A. Forthcoming. “A cross-cultural value for liberal care arrangements,” in Caring for Liberalism, eds. Baehr and Bhandary, New York: Routledge.
  • Bhandary, A. 2018. “Dependency Care before Pizza: A reply to Jan Narveson,” The Journal of Philosophical Research, published online August 3, 2018. DOI: 10.5840/jpr201882126.
  • Bhandary, Asha L. 2017. "The Arrow of Care Map: Abstract Care in Ideal Theory." Feminist Philosophy Quarterly 3, (4). Article 5.
  • Bhandary, A. 2017. “Arranged Marriage: Could it Contribute to Justice?” The Journal of Political Philosophy, Early View published Sept. 29, 2017.
  • Graber, A., Carter, S., Bhandary, A., Matthew Rizzo. 2017. “The Case for Enrolling High-Cost Patients in an ACO”. HealthCare Ethics Committee Forum: An Interprofessional Journal on Healthcare Institutions' Ethical and Legal Issues. 7).
  • Bhandary, A. 2016. “Liberal Dependency Care,” Journal of Philosophical Research (Vol. 41), Online first published on June 28, 2016. DOI: 10.5840/jpr201662767.
  • Bhandary, A. 2016. “A Millian Concept of Care,” Social Theory and Practice (Vol. 42, no. 1): 155-182.
  • Graber, A., A. Bhandary and M. Rizzo. 2015. “Ethical practice under accountable care.” Healthcare Ethics Committee Forum 28:2 (June 2016): 115-128. First published 2015 online.
  • Bhandary, A. 2013. Review of Adaptive Preferences and Women’s Empowerment, by Serene J. Khader, Oxford and New York: Oxford University Press, 2011, Hypatia 28:2 (Spring 2013): 390-393.
  • Bhandary, A. 2010. “Dependency in Justice: Can Rawlsian Liberalism Accommodate Kittay’s Dependency Critique?” Hypatia 25:1 (Winter 2010): 140-156.

Professor Bhandary is faculty advisor for the University of Iowa’s Minorities and Philosophy (MAP) chapter.

She is a member of the Managing Board for PIKSI-Rock.

She is also Chair-Elect of the Association for Feminist Ethics and Social Thought.

Dissertations Directed: 

Phillip Ricks. A Theory of Resistance. Co-directed with David Stern. 2017.

Professional History: 

2012-current Assistant Professor, University of Iowa

2011-2012 Visiting Assistant Professor, Wesleyan University

2010-2011 CLAS Dean’s Graduate Fellow, Humanities Institute, University of Connecticut

2006-2010 Teaching Assistant, University of Connecticut

2004-2006 Strategy Consultant, Wellspring Consulting (consulting for national non-profits)