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Feminist Perspectives on Young Mothers and Young Mothering

Feminist Perspectives on Young Mothers and Young Mothering

Author: Joanne Minaker, Deborah Byrd and Andrea O'Reilly
ISBN: 978-1-77258-208-6
Pub. Date: 01 Sep 2019
Price: £22.95
Binding: Paperback
Publisher: DEMETER PRESS
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To be a young mother is almost by definition to be considered an unfit mother. Thus, it is not surprising that young Canadian, U.S. and Australian mothers are often scorned, stigmatized and monitored. This is a book about being young, being a mother, and grappling with what it means to inhabit these two complex social positions. This book critiques the dominant, negative construction of young motherhood. Contributors reject the notion that the ideal mother is a 30ish, white, middle-class, able-bodied, married, heterosexual woman situated in a nuclear family.

This collection privileges the insights and stories of a diverse array of young mothers such as; a young mother coerced into giving her child up for a adoption, a young queer mother who has been parenting a child borne by her trans partner and who is now pregnant herself and many more. The tales analyzed and recounted in the collection record experiences of pain and joy, frustration and success, struggle and resistance, oppression and empowerment. We invite readers to hear the all too often silenced stories of young mothers, to learn what prevents and what allows these mothers to lead lives of grit, determination, authenticity, and agency as they strive to lovingly care for themselves, their children, and in many cases, other young mothers.

Feminist Perspectives on Young Mothers and Young Mothering is a ground-breaking and insightful book that explores the unique experiences of young mothers as they navigate complex patriarchal social structures, ideologies of mothering, and challenging and diverse social locations and circumstances. This book provides invaluable insight into the multiple and varied ways that young mothers experience mothering based on intersections of gender, race, social class, and age. The authors effectively highlight the voices, experiences, and counter-narratives of young mothers who challenge stigmatizing generalizations about young mothers capabilities, underscoring the need for greater support and empowerment of young mothers and young mothering. The personal narratives of young mothers discussed in the chapters are significant, moving, and though-provoking. Academics, students, service providers, and the wider general public would benefit from reading this book as it provides a greater understanding of the experiences of young mothers and young mothering, which has been invisible for far too long. -- Caroline McDonald-Harker, PhD, Sociologist and Associate Professor, Department of Sociology & Anthropology, Mount Royal University, Calgary, Alberta

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