Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 46

Search results for: motherhood

46 The Net as a Living Experience of Distance Motherhood within Italian Culture

Authors: C. Papapicco


Motherhood is an existential human relationship that lasts for the whole life and is always interwoven with subjectivity and culture. As a result of the brain drain, the motherhood becomes motherhood at distance. Starting from the hypothesis that re-signification of the mother at distance practices is culturally relevant; the research aims to understand the experience of mother at a distance in order to extrapolate the strategies of management of the empty nest. Specifically, the research aims to evaluate the experience of a brain drain’s mother, who created a blog that intends to take care of other parents at a distance. Actually, the blog is the only artifact symbol of the Italian culture of motherhood at distance. In the research, a Netnographic Analysis of the blog is offered with the aim of understanding if the online world becomes an opportunity to manage the role of mother at a distance. A narrative interview with the blog creator was conducted and then the texts were analyzed by means of a Diatextual Analysis approach. It emerged that the migration projects of talented children take on different meanings and representations for parents. Thus, it is shown that the blog becomes a new form of understanding and practicing motherhood at a distance.

Keywords: brain drain, diatextual analysis, distance motherhood blog, online and offline narrations

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45 An Assessment of the Impact of Safe Motherhood Initiative on Maternal Health of Women in Gumel Local Government Area of Jigawa State, Nigeria

Authors: Ahmed Mudi, Bala Zakar


The paper assesses the impact of safe motherhood initiative on maternal health of women in Gumel Local Government Area of Jigawa State. The work will specifically concentrate on the background on safe motherhood scheme and maternal health of women. The objective of this paper is to assess the level of safe motherhood scheme in Gumel local government area, to find out the level of maternal health in Gumel local government as well as to determine the impact of safe motherhood scheme on maternal health on women in Gumel Local Government Area Jigawa State. Various literature on the topic are reviewed, the paper adopts survey design and use questionnaire to collect data from the respondent. The study comprises 350 women selected from six rural communities in Gumel using random sampling techniques, and the data was analysed by simple frequency and percentage. The research concluded that safe motherhood initiative has a significant impact on the maternal health of women in Gumel Local Government Area of Jigawa State. Finally, suitable recommendations were given on how to improve the scheme to ensure better maternal health in the region.

Keywords: action, assessment, maternal health, safe motherhood, surgery

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44 Motherhood Practices and Symbolic Capital: A Study of Teen Mothers in Northeastern Thailand

Authors: Ampai Muensit, Maniemai Thongyou, Patcharin Lapanun


Teen mothers have been viewed as ‘a powerless’ facing numerous pressures including poverty, immaturity of motherhood, and especially social blame.This paper argues that, to endure as an agent, they keep struggling to overcome all difficulties in their everyday life by using certain symbols to negotiate the situations they encounter, and to obtain a social position without surrendering to the dominating socio-cultural structure. Guided by Bourdieu’s theory of practice, this study looks at how teen mothers use symbolic capital in their motherhood practices. Although motherhood practices can be found in different contexts with various types of capital utilization, this paper focuses on the use of symbolic capitals in teen mothers’ practices within the contexts of the community. The study employs a qualitative methodology; data was collected from 12 informants through life history, in-depth interview, observation and the content analytical method was employed for data analysis. The findings show that child and motherhood were key symbolic capitals in motherhood practices. Employing such capitals teen mothers can achieve an acceptance from community – particularly from the new community. These symbolic capitals were the important sources of teen mothers’ power to turn the tide by changing their status – from “the powerless” to be “the agent”. The use of symbolic capitals also related to habitus of teen mothers in better compromising for an appropriate social position.

Keywords: teen mother, motherhood practice, symbolic capital, community

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43 Motherhood in the Poetry of Rosario Castellanos: Other Face of Womanhood

Authors: Dovile Kuzminskaite


Rosario Castellanos is one of the most important Mexican writers; in her poetry and essays, she demythologizes social stereotypes about womanhood that were deeply present in Mexican society of the XXth century. In her extent poetic work, Rosario Castellanos demythologizes such concepts as romance, marriage, and motherhood, showing them in a way which did not agree with the norms of the catholic based society of her times. The aim of this research is to analyze the poetry of Rosario Castellanos working on sematic and structural levels and to investigate closely how she represents motherhood, what is the role of mother and the relationship of mother and child in her poems. Also, it is of interest to observe what are the elements used in the process of creating a different concept of motherhood. In order to reflect on this subject, this research will be based on semiotics, queer studies, and the philosophy of Michel Foucault, who introduces the concept of power when reflecting on gender and society. Rosario Castellanos turned into an example of disobedience and otherness for a generation of intellectuals in Spanish speaking countries, and because of this reason, it is of great importance to understand the politic and social statements that are represented by her poetry.

Keywords: motherhood, women, poetry, Mexico

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42 Mothering in Self- Defined Challenging Circumstances: A Photo-Elicitation Study of Motherhood and the Role of Social Media

Authors: Joanna Apps, Elena Markova


Concepts of the ideal mother and ideal mothering are disseminated through familial experiences, religious and cultural depictions of mothers and the national media. In recent years social media can also be added to the channels by which mothers and motherhood are socially constructed. However, the gulf between these depictions, -or in the case of social media ‘self-curations’ - of motherhood and lived experience has never been wider, particularly for women in disadvantaged or difficult circumstances. We report on a study of four lone mothers who were living with one or more of the following: limiting long term illness, large families, in temporary accommodation and on low incomes. The mothers were interviewed 3 times and invited to take a series of photos reflecting their lives in between each of the interviews. These photographs were used to ground the interviews in lived experience and as stimuli to discuss how the images within them compared to portrayals of mothers and motherhood that participants were exposed to on social media. The objectives of the study were to explore how mothers construct their identity in challenging and disadvantaged circumstances; to consider what their photographs of everyday life tell us about their experiences and understand the impact idealised images of motherhood have on real mothers in difficult circumstances. The results suggested that the mothers both strived to adhere to certain ideals of motherhood and acknowledged elements of these as partially or wholly impossible to achieve. The lack of depictions, in both national and social media, of motherhood that corresponded with their lived experience inhibited the mothers’ use of social media. Other themes included: lack of control, frustration and strain; and parental pride, love, humour, resilience, and hope.

Keywords: motherhood, social media, photography, poverty

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41 Sexual Orientation, Household Labour Division and the Motherhood Wage Penalty

Authors: Julia Hoefer Martí


While research has consistently found a significant motherhood wage penalty for heterosexual women, where homosexual women are concerned, evidence has appeared to suggest no effect, or possibly even a wage bonus. This paper presents a model of the household with a public good that requires both a monetary expense and a labour investment, and where the household budget is shared between partners. Lower-wage partners will do relatively more of the household labour while higher-wage partners will specialise in market labour, and the arrival of a child exacerbates this split, resulting in the lower-wage partner taking on even more of the household labour in relative terms. Employers take this gender-sexuality dyad as a signal for employees’ commitment to the labour market after having a child, and use the information when setting wages after employees become parents. Given that women empirically earn lower wages than men, in a heterosexual couple the female partner will often do more of the household labour. However, as not every female partner has a lower wage, this results in an over-adjustment of wages that manifests as an unexplained motherhood wage penalty. On the other hand, in homosexual couples wage distributions are ex ante identical, and gender is no longer a useful signal to employers as to whether the partner is likely to specialise in household labour or market labour. This model is then tested using longitudinal data from the EU Standards of Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC) to investigate the hypothesis that women experience different wage effects of motherhood depending on their sexual orientation. While heterosexual women receive a significant motherhood wage penalty of 8-10%, homosexual mothers do not receive any significant wage bonus or penalty of motherhood, consistent with the hypothesis presented above.

Keywords: discrimination, gender, motherhood, sexual orientation, labor economics

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40 Motherhood Managerial in Health Services: Need Eustress Internalization

Authors: Retty Ratnawati, Santi Sri Wulandari, Tulus Sabrina


Feminine and masculine gender role stress could occur in some work situation. Being manager in health services that is known to be more women’ role in Indonesia, has expected to have feminine stereotype role. In the communities, this has been done in the program kesejahteraan keluarga (welfare family program) since the 1970s, for example through family planning program. The aim of the study was to explore the experience of being a motherhood managerial in health services. Our auto ethnographic study has revealed that motherhood managerial, even though running by a woman, could have some stress conditions whether she has realized or has not. The challenge would occur when the manager did not realize that she needed the eustress. The autonomy concept for a woman to be a manager could be a complex cycle that needs open communication continually and understanding the four elements surround her life. In conclusion, there is a demand to have the eustress when the manager does not realize that she has to be an autonomy person. However, it does not need eustress when the manager understands about how to deal with the complex cycle of being autonomy.

Keywords: motherhood managerial, eustress, feminine gender role stress, masculine gender role stress, autonomy concept in women

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39 Family and Marital Functioning during the Transition to Motherhood

Authors: Fei Wan Ngai


Background: Family and marital functioning has become an important public health issue because it is vital to child development and well-being. Objective: This study was designed to examine the changes in family and marital functioning among Chinese women during the transition to motherhood. Methods: A longitudinal design was used. A convenience sample of 202 Chinese childbearing women completed the Medical Outcomes Study Family and Marital Functioning Measures during pregnancy, at 6 weeks and at 6 months postpartum. Results: The results showed that women experienced substantial decline in their family and marital functioning from pregnancy to 6 weeks and 6 months postpartum. Conclusions: The findings of this study highlight the need for more attention to family and marital functioning among women after childbirth. Culturally relevant interventions should be developed to assist women in facing the challenges of new motherhood and achieving a better family and marital functioning.

Keywords: family and marital functioning, perinatal period, women

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38 Motherhood Medicalization and Marketing: From Media Frames to Women's Decisions

Authors: Leila Mohammadi


This article discusses the technology of social egg freezing in the context of existing literature on medicalization, motherhood, and marketing. The social egg freezing technique offers to preserve some healthy eggs for age-related fertility decline in the future. The study draws on a qualitative analysis and participants observation of media publications, including text, images, or audio-visual about social egg freezing technology and postpone maternity, to identify and compare their communication strategies from a framing theory perspective. Using 442 surveys and 158 pieces of publications in Spanish media, this study demonstrated that the narratives used by these publications and their structures follow a marketing objective to medicalize motherhood. Within these frames, the market of preserving fertility is cast to show compassion and concern about women. In the opinion of participants, egg freezing technology liberates, empowers, and automates women from patriarchal control, and also gives them the responsibility of taking care of their body and reproductive system. This study showed this opinion is significantly influenced by media and their communication strategies supported by providers of this business.

Keywords: motherhood, social egg freezing, medicalization, marketing, media frames, fertility, assisted reproductive system

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37 Hysterectomy and Symbolic Damage: When the Desire for Motherhood is Reactivated in a Nun

Authors: Ndje Ndje Mireille


The improvement in the physical aspects of hysterectomy has tended to make us forget the psychological burden of this operation for many women. African women closely associate fertility and femininity, and they fear that their desire will diminish, that they will be less desirable after having undergone a hysterectomy. Medicine may be tempted to trivialize this surgical intervention by relying on the evolution of current surgery that leaves little or no marks. It is possible to think that the uterus is useless for a nun who has decided to freely disregard her motherhood. We used the clinical research method for this study. Through a semi-directive interview guide, we collected the verbatims of an hysterectomized catholic nun. The verbatims were transcribed and analyzed with the thematic content analysis. This analysis shows that the medical reality does not always correspond to the subjective experience of women, for whom hysterectomy can imply strong symbolic damage. The uterus is not essential to life, but it is essential to give life, and this lack can reactivate a desire for motherhood. The experience of hysterectomy is unique for each woman in relation to her history. This operation will eliminate all hope of pregnancy; it will be felt as intimate mutilation and an attack on femininity, it will bring up concerns about sexuality. Even if a woman has past the age of having children, has gone through menopause, or has freely decided not to have children, she still find it difficult to accept this procedure. The lack of uterus make a woman feel useless.

Keywords: hysterectomy, symbolic damage, desire for motherhood, feminity, nun

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36 An Ethnographic Study of Commercial Surrogacy Industry in India

Authors: Dalia Bhattacharjee


Motherhood as an institution is considered as sacred. Reproduction and motherhood have always been a concern of the private space of home. However, with the emergence of technologies like the Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ARTs), this intimate area has moved into the public. A woman can now become a mother with artificial insemination done by expert medical professionals in a hospital. With this development, the meanings of motherhood and childrearing have altered. Mothers have been divided into ‘ovarian mothers’ (those who provide the eggs), ‘uterine mothers’ (those who carry out the pregnancy and give birth), and ‘social mothers’ (those who raise the child). Thus, the ART business deconstructs motherhood by defining who the biological mother is and who the social mother is and who – despite contributing parts or processes of her body to the life of the child is not a mother, but merely the donor of a product, be it the egg or the womb, which is owned by those who are favoured by the contract. The industry of commercial surrogacy in India has been estimated to be of $2.3 billion as of 2012. There are many women who work as surrogate mothers in this industry for the exchange of money. It runs like a full-fledged business guided by a highly profit oriented capitalist market. The reproductive labourers are identified as mere womb renters or victims and not as active agents in such arrangements. Such a discourse undercuts the agency exercised by the women. The present study is an ethnography into the commercial surrogacy industry in India. This journey furthers the understanding of the dilemmas faced by the reproductive labourers. The paper emphasizes on the experiences of reproduction and motherhood outside the private space of the home in the commercial surrogacy industry in India, and, argues that this multiplicity of experiences need much focus and attention, where, the consumer becomes ‘the’ citizen and the women workers continue to be victims. The study draws on the narratives of the reproductive labourers, who remain at the center, and yet, at the periphery of such arrangements. This feminist ethnography is informed by the feminist standpoint theory to account for and analyse these varied experiences which further the understanding of the dilemmas faced by the reproductive labourers.

Keywords: commercial surrogacy, ethnography, motherhood, standpoint theory

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35 Social Discourses on Lone Motherhood in South Korea: Social Prejudice and Process of Resistance, Adaptation and Negotiation

Authors: Thi Thu Van Nguyen


In South Korea, Confucianism has not only played a crucial position in Korean traditional culture but also deeply rooted in people’s mind. Confucianism bears a special emphasis on the traditional family pattern characterized by paternalism. Therefore, non-paternity families are barely recognized and unwed mothers are faced with numerous prejudices in their life. Prejudice to unwed mothers in Korea is believed to stem from social discourses against lone motherhood which is the way how people look and talk about unwed mothers and from the early time these social discourses have big impacts on their daily lives. However, after the 1990s, along with the rapid transformation of family pattern and support from social welfare organizations, unwed mothers have gradually got to escape from the social prejudice then established themselves as a new family form. This study is aimed at researching social discourses on lone motherhood in Korea and the process of resistance, adaptation and negotiation of unwed mothers in three different stages: the antenatal, postnatal stages and social inclusion. The anthropological method is employed. Twenty single young mothers of the Korean Unwed Mothers Families' Association were engaged in the author’s detailed interviews. The study’s frame analysis is based on the theoretical framework on social discourses on lone motherhood by Simon Duncan and Rosalind Edwards (1999). This study is an effort to comprehend and investigate the difficulties experienced by unwed mothers living in negative social discourses and the way they overcome the difficulties.

Keywords: unwed mothers, gender, social discourses, social prejudice, Confucianism

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34 Gender and Parenthood in Web 2.0.: Research on Role Distance in a Bulgarian Weblog Dedicated to Motherhood

Authors: Gergana Nenova


The persistence of gender arrangements in childcare has been well-documented and theorized, but we know little on how they have been represented in Web 2.0. by the social actors themselves. This paper relies on Goffman’s concept of role distance to explore the online self-representations of mothers as a group and thus the complicated relationship between gender and parenthood. The object of research is a popular Bulgarian weblog dedicated to motherhood, and its content has been analyzed through content analysis. The results demonstrate that the concept of role distance can be successfully used to illuminate the ways the gendered expectations and norms of parenting are being questioned online. The research contributes both to the understanding of the relevance of the concept of role distance in explaining gender relations and of its increasing importance in Web 2.0.

Keywords: gender, parenthood, role distance, Web 2.0

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33 Motherhood Factors Influencing the Business Growth of Women-Owned Sewing Businesses in Lagos, Nigeria: A Mixed Method Study

Authors: Oyedele Ogundana, Amon Simba, Kostas Galanakis, Lynn Oxborrow


The debate about factors influencing the business growth of women-owned businesses has been a topical issue in business management. Currently, scholars have identified the issues of access to money, market, and management as canvasing factors influencing the business growth of women-owned businesses. However, the influence of motherhood (household/family context) on business growth is inconclusive in the literature; despite that women are more family-oriented than their male counterparts. Therefore, this research study considers the influence of motherhood factor (household/family context) on the business growth of women-owned sewing businesses (WOSBs) in Lagos, Nigeria. The sewing business sector is chosen as the fashion industry (which includes sewing businesses) currently accounts for the second largest number of jobs in Sub-Saharan Africa, following agriculture. Thus, sewing businesses provide a rich ground for contributing to existing scholarly work. Research questions; (1) In what way does the motherhood factor influence the business growth of WOSBs in Lagos? (2) To what extent does the motherhood factor influence the business growth of WOSBs in Lagos? For the method design, a pragmatic approach, a mixed-methods technique and an abductive form of reasoning are adopted. The method design is chosen because it fits, better than other research perspectives, with the research questions posed in this study. For instance, using a positivist approach will not sufficiently answer research question 1, neither will an interpretive approach sufficiently answer research question 2. Therefore, the research method design is divided into 2 phases, and the results from one phase are used to inform the development of the subsequent phases (only phase 1 has been completed at the moment). The first phase uses qualitative data and analytical method to answer research question 1. While the second phase of the research uses quantitative data and analytical method to answer research question 2. For the qualitative phase, 5 WOSBs were purposefully selected and interviewed. The sampling technique is selected as it was not the intention of the researcher to make any statistical inferences, at this phase, rather the purpose was just exploratory. Therefore, the 5 sampled women comprised of 2 unmarried women, 1 married woman with no child, and 2 married women with children. A 40-60 minutes interview was conducted per participants. The interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed. Thereafter, the data were analysed using thematic analysis in order to unearth patterns and relationships. Findings for the first phase of this research reveals that motherhood (household/family context) directly influences (positively/negatively) the performance of WOSBs in Lagos. Apart from a direct influence on WOSBs, motherhood also moderates (positively/negatively) other factors–e.g., access to money, management/human resources and market/opportunities– influencing WOSBs in Lagos. To further strengthen this conclusion, a word frequency query result shows that ‘family,’ ‘husband’ and ‘children’ are among the 10 words used frequently in all the interview transcripts. This first phase contributes to existing studies by showing the various forms by which motherhood influences WOSBs. The second phase (which data are yet to be collected) would reveal the extent to which motherhood influence the business growth of WOSBs in Lagos.

Keywords: women-owned sewing businesses, business growth, motherhood, Lagos

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32 Working Women and Leave in India

Authors: Ankita Verma


Women transform the group of people into a family and a house into a home. When a woman embraces motherhood, she undergoes several stresses – both physical and mental. Therefore, to be supportive of women during this critical stage is a societal responsibility. India is in the league of many developed nations in formulating women-friendly policies. One such initiative is the Maternity Benefits Act; first passed in 1961 and later amended from time to time with the latest amended Act of 2017. This review paper critically analyzes provisions of the Act, its implementation, and the legal issues arising out of implementation of the Act. The review suggests that the Act has made a positive impact and the judiciary also has played its role in streamlining the process of implementation of the Act. However, at the same time, it is also felt that employers often hesitate in hiring a mother or an expectant mother.

Keywords: maternity benefits, maternity benefits act 1961 & 2017, motherhood, maternity and paternity leave, medical bonus, work environment

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31 Defending Motherhood: Strategic Comparisons and the Management of Moral Self-Worth among Ex-Offender Mothers

Authors: Geniece Mondé


This article examines how formerly incarcerated mothers deploy strategic comparisons to support their claims of moral self-worth. In depth interviews with 69 ex-offender mothers show that although women occupy a morally ambiguous space, they frame their roles as “good” mothers as independent of past illegal activity. In substantiating the “good” mother narrative women draw comparisons with two groups of women. Some respondents identify individuals perceived as morally disadvantaged and draw comparisons that illustrate their comparative strength in relation to mothers who fail to adequately meet the needs of their children. Women also compared themselves to morally advantaged mothers and expressed a desire to embody the ideals and values of women they viewed as superior mothers. Findings reveal that respondents’ use of strategic comparisons substantiates their framing of personal moral identity, as well as their goals for the future. The paper concludes by examining the theoretical implications of strategic comparisons for the study of morality and identity construction.

Keywords: Ex-Offender, Rehabilitation, Incarceration, Motherhood

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30 Problem, Policy and Polity in Agenda Setting: Analyzing Safe Motherhood Program in India

Authors: Vanita Singh


In developing countries, there are conflicting political agendas; policy makers have to prioritize issues from a list of issues competing for the limited resources. Thus, it is imperative to understand how some issues gain attention, and others lose in the policy circles. Multiple-Streams Theory of Kingdon (1984) is among the influential theories that help to understand the public policy process and is utilitarian for health policy makers to understand how certain health issues emerge on the policy agendas. The issue of maternal mortality was long standing in India and was linked with high birth rate thus the focus of maternal health policy was on family planning since India’s independence. However, a paradigm shift was noted in the maternal health policy in the year 1992 with the launch of Safe Motherhood Programme and then in the year 2005, when the agenda of maternal health policy became universalizing institutional deliveries and phasing-out of Traditional Birth Attendants (TBAs) from the health system. There were many solutions proposed by policy communities other than universalizing of institutional deliveries, including training of TBAs and improving socio-economic conditions of pregnant women. However, Government of India favored medical community, which was advocating for the policy of universalizing institutional delivery, and neglected the solutions proposed by other policy communities. It took almost 15 years for the advocates of institutional delivery to transform their proposed solution into a program - the Janani Suraksha Yojana (JSY), a safe-motherhood program promoting institutional delivery through cash incentives to pregnant women. Thus, the case of safe motherhood policy in India is worth studying to understand how certain issues/problems gain political attention and how advocacy work in policy circles. This paper attempts to understand the factors that favored the agenda of safe-motherhood in the policy circle in India, using John Kingdon’s Multiple-Stream model of agenda-setting. Through document analysis and literature review, the paper traces the evolution of safe motherhood program and maternal health policy. The study has used open source documents available on the website of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, media reports (Times of India Archive) and related research papers. The documents analyzed include National health policy-1983, National Health Policy-2002, written reports of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Department, National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) document, documents related to Janani Suraksha Yojana and research articles related to maternal health programme in India. The study finds that focusing events and credible indicators coupled with media attention has the potential to recognize a problem. The political elites favor clearly defined and well-accepted solutions. The trans-national organizations affect the agenda-setting process in a country through conditional resource provision. The closely-knit policy communities and political entrepreneurship are required for advocating solutions high on agendas. The study has implications for health policy makers in identifying factors that have the potential to affect the agenda-setting process for a desired policy agenda and identify the challenges in generating political priorities.

Keywords: agenda-setting, focusing events, Kingdon’s model, safe motherhood program India

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29 Psychological Well-Being and Human Rights of Teenage Mothers Attending One Secondary School in the Eastern Cape, South Africa

Authors: Veliswa Nonfundo Hoho, Jabulani Gilford Kheswa


This paper reports on teenage motherhood and its adverse outcomes on the academic performance, emotional well-being and sexual relationships that adolescent females encounter. Drawing from Ryff’s six dimensions of psychological well-being and Bronfenbrenner’s ecological model which underpinned this study, teenage motherhood has been found to link with multiple factors such as poverty, negative self-esteem, substance abuse, cohabitation, intimate partner violence and ill-health. Furthermore, research indicates that in schools where educators fail to perform their duties as loco-parentis to motivate adolescent females learners who are mothers, absenteeism, poor academic performance and learned helplessness, are likely. The aim of this research was two-fold, namely; (i) to determine the impact of teenage motherhood on the psychological well-being of the teenage mothers and (ii) to investigate the policies which protect the human rights of teenage mothers attending secondary schools. In a qualitative study conducted in one secondary school, Fort Beaufort, Eastern Cape, South Africa, fifteen Xhosa-speaking teenage mothers, aged 15-18 years old, were interviewed. The sample was recruited by means of snow-ball sampling. To safeguard the human dignity of the respondents, informed consent, confidentiality, anonymity and privacy of the respondents were assured. For trustworthiness, this research ensured that credibility, neutrality, and transferability, are met. Following an axial and open coding of responses, five themes were identified; Health issues of teenage mothers, lack of support, violation of human rights, impaired sense of purpose in life and intimate partner-violence. From these findings, it is clear that teenage mothers lack resilience and are susceptible to contract sexually transmitted infections and HIV/AIDS because they are submissive and hopeless. Furthermore, owing to stigma that the teenage mothers' experience from family members, they resort to alcohol and drug abuse, and feel demotivated to bond with their babies. In conclusion, the recommendations are that the Health and Social Development departments collaborate to empower the psychological well-being of teenage mothers. Furthermore, school policies on discrimination should be enacted and consistently implemented.

Keywords: depression, discrimination, self-esteem, teenage mothers

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28 Gender Stereotypes in Reproductive Medicine with Regard to Parental Age

Authors: Monika Michałowska, Anna Alichniewicz


Detrimental outcomes of advanced maternal age on the chances of fertilization, pregnancy as well as mother and fetus health have been recognized for several decades. It seemed interesting to investigate whether there is a comparable awareness of the detrimental influence on the reproductive outcomes of late fatherhood, given that it has been already ten years since an intense and growing interest concerning later-age fatherhood commenced in medical research. To address that issue a two-step research was done. First, we performed a review of the subject literature to answer the following questions: 1) What age is defined as advanced?; 2) Is the same age defined as advanced in both genders?; 3) What terminology concerning age issues is used?; 4) Is the same age terminology used regarding both genders? The second part of our studies was devoted to the views of medical students. This part of our research comprised both quantitative and qualitative studies. Opinions of medical students in one of the Polish medical universities on several issues connected with assisted reproduction technology (ART) were gathered: 1) students’ attitude to in vitro fertilization (IVF) for women over 40 and for postmenopausal women; 2) students’ attitude to late fatherhood; 3) students’ reasoning given against acceptability of IVF procedure for all of these group of patients involved in an IVF procedure. Our analyses revealed that: First, there is no universal definition of the term ‘advanced age’; secondly, there is a general tendency to adopt different age limits depending on whether they refer to maternal or paternal age, but no justification is provided by the researchers explaining why they set different age limits for women and men; thirdly, the image of postponed fatherhood stands in stark contrast to postponed motherhood - while postponed fatherhood is frequently portrayed as a reasonable and conscious decision enabling a stable family environment for a child, the reasonableness of postponed motherhood is often questioned; finally, the bias regarding maternal versus paternal age is deeply embedded in medical students’ attitude to IVF for women over 40 and for postmenopausal women.

Keywords: gender stereotypes, reproductive medicine, maternal age, paternal age

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27 “Who Will Marry Me?”: The Marital Status of Disabled Women in India

Authors: Sankalpa Satapathy


The stigma attached to disability is very high in India and given its patriarchal society women and their interests have always been pushed to the background. The identity of disabled women is compromised under the social construction of disability which lowers their self-esteem and hampers their development. Disability policies in India have focused on provision of educational and employment opportunities to make them economically productive members of the society. This preoccupation with the materialistic spheres of lives of the disabled has led to a neglect of the private sphere concerning intimate social relationships and motherhood. This paper seeks to bring to forefront the private lives of disabled women. Semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with twenty seven women with physical disability (congenital/acquired) from Odisha, a state in India. Sampling was done in a manner to include women from various strata of the society to allow meaningful analysis. In a society where paramount importance is attached to wifehood and motherhood, the chances of marriage for disabled women were very low compared to disabled men. Majority believed that marriage and having a family was meant for non disabled women and had decided against getting married. Socialization process was found to be a major factor in determining the ideas and aspirations of disabled women. They were clearly sidelined by their families on the issue of marriage. Education and employment levels did not seem to increase the appeal of disabled women to prospective suitors. But not all the women interviewed were closed to the idea of intimate relationships and marriage. Disabled women who were married or hoped to get married in future were found to have a better body image and greater self motivation. It is interesting to understand the means by which these women, who have been brought up to internalize ideas of their unattractiveness, undesirability, asexuality and inability to care, established identities which have so long been denied to them. With these stories of personal triumphs an attempt is made for reclamation of private spheres which have been abandoned by disability policies and make them gender sensitive.

Keywords: disability, gender, marriage, relationships

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26 Exploring Barriers and Pathways to Wellbeing and Sources of Resilience of Refugee Mothers in Calgary during the COVID-19 Pandemic: The Role of Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY)

Authors: Chloe Zivot, Natasha Vattikonda, Debbie Bell


We conducted interviews with refugee mothers (n=28) participating in the Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY) program in Calgary to explore experiences of wellbeing and resilience during the COVID-19 pandemic. Disruptions to education and increased isolation, and parental duties contributed to decreased wellbeing. Mothers identified tangible protective factors at the micro, meso, and macro levels. HIPPY played a substantial role in pandemic resilience, speaking to the potential of home-based intervention models in mitigating household adversity.

Keywords: refugee resettlement, family wellbeing, COVID-19, motherhood, resilience, gender, health

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25 Survey of American Women to Promote Social Citizenship among White, African American, and Muslim American Women

Authors: Rachel Turney


American Woman is a discussion of being a woman in American through the lens of intersectionality, critical race theory, Muslim American identities, and social citizenship. The survey design and resulting paper are based on the researcher’s personal experience studying intersectionality and Muslim American identities through National Endowment for the Humanities. The researcher poses three questions to White, African American, and Muslim American women about female identify in America. Results are coded and analyzed in their meaning in the context of American society. Results show the similarities, primarily the idea of motherhood and fighting in society. Results also examine differences like those related to faith and family identifies in responses. The researcher examines the specific overlap in responses in the context of social citizenship.

Keywords: women, Muslim women, intersectionality, feminism

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24 Female Dis-Empowerment in Contemporary Zimbabwe: A Re-Look at Shona Writers’ Vision of the Factors and Solutions

Authors: Godwin Makaudze


The majority of women in contemporary Zimbabwe continue to hold marginalised and insignificant positions in society and to be accorded negative and stereotyped images in literature. In light of this, government and civic organisations and even writers channel many resources, time, and efforts towards the emancipation of the female gender. Using the Africana womanist and socio-historical literary theories and focussing on two post-colonial novels, this paper re-engages the dis-empowerment of women in contemporary Zimbabwe, examining the believed causes and suggested solutions. The paper observes that the writers whip the already whipped by blaming patriarchy, African men and cultural practices as the underlying causes of such a sorry state of affairs while at the same time celebrating war against all these, as well as education, unity among women, Christianity and single motherhood as panaceas to the problem. The paper concludes that the writers’ anger is misdirected as they have fallen trap to the very popular yet mythical victim-blame motif espoused by many writers who focus on Shona people’s problems.

Keywords: cultural practices, female dis-empowerment, patriarchy, Shona novel, solutions, Zimbabwe

Procedia PDF Downloads 256
23 Mentorship and Feelings of Identify and Self-Efficacy in Women Returning to the Workforce after an Extended Child-Rearing Leave

Authors: Jacquelyn Irene Eidson


Women who leave the workforce due to motherhood and wish to return are a valuable, untapped resource for organizations. Levinson’s theory of adult development defines life as a sequence of transitions requiring difficult decisions that prompt humans to question their identity and their self-efficacy. The experience of being a working mother and the experience of workplace mentorship have received extensive research attention. Merging the two experiences and focusing on feelings of identity and self-efficacy provides a unique and focused opportunity for learning. Through one-on-one interviews and focus group discussion with working mothers that had previously left the workforce for an extended leave due to child-rearing, a meaningful description of their experiences will be obtained. Data is currently being collected via a collaboration with state banking associations in the United States. Results from the study will enable organizations worldwide to more effectively provide mentorship opportunities built around a culture of understanding while more effectively recruiting, supporting, developing, and retaining this valuable talent pool.

Keywords: identity, mentorship, self-efficacy, working mother

Procedia PDF Downloads 102
22 Study on the Work-Life Balance of Selected Working Single Mothers in the Coastal Community of La Huerta, Paranaque

Authors: Idette Sheirina Biyo, Rhodora Lynn C. Lintag


This paper explores how the work-life balance of selected working single mothers situated in a coastal community is affecting their well-being. Working single mothers carry the responsibility of earning for their family while simultaneously exercising their motherhood. This study utilized a purposeful qualitative research through semi-structured interviews among ten working single mothers living in the coastal community of La Huerta, Parañaque in order to identify the following: a) experiences of the working single mothers, b) problems usually encountered, and c) how these problems are affecting their well-being. Dorothy Smith’s Feminist Standpoint theory is used as a theoretical lens in order to explain their work-life balance. Results have shown that despite their dual roles as the main income earners and heads of the households, they are not neglecting to care for their well-being. They consider getting sufficient rest, eating well, and going to church as forms of caring for their well-being. Other factors that affect their work-life balance include living arrangements, work hours, type of work, and income.

Keywords: coastal community, well-being, work-life balance, Working single mother

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21 Representation of Female Experiences by Upcoming African Women Writers: A Case Study of Three Post-2000 South African Narratives

Authors: Liberty Takudzwa Nyete


This paper examines the feminine representation of women’s experiences in relation to womanhood as depicted by selected three South African female authors:. The study examines the challenges, difficulties and strategies used by various female characters’ to deal with situations in a typical apartheid and post-apartheid society. It also explores the way in which gender, race and class discourses are treated in the selected texts. The three authors, born and bred at the peak of the anti-apartheid movement and women’s protest against patriarchy, witnessed the effects of apartheid on both their families and societies at large which could perhaps have influenced their writing. The study is informed by both the feminist and womanist ideologies postulated by different theorists. In particular, the study of Not Woman Enough considers issues of motherhood, womanhood and racism; while that of Shameless focuses on the importance of women’s narration of their own stories, sexuality and racism; and the depiction of sexual violence, class, and women’s roles in the fight against oppression is explored with regard to This Book Betrays My Brother. Thus, the study concludes on the social makeovers that include women in all the spheres of life, such as education and the economy, which were largely dominated by men but are no longer defined by economic status, physical attributes, class nor sexuality.

Keywords: apartheid, feminism, prostitution, sexual violence, womanism, womanhood

Procedia PDF Downloads 147
20 Child Trafficking for Adoption Purposes: A Study into the Criminogenic Factors of the German Intercountry Adoption System

Authors: Elvira Loibl


In Western countries, the demand for adoptable children, especially healthy babies, has been considerably high for several years. Rising infertility rates, liberal abortion politics, the widespread use of contraception, and the increasing acceptance of unmarried motherhood are factors that have decreased the number of infants available for domestic adoption in the U.S. and Europe. As a consequence, many involuntarily childless couples turn to intercountry adoption as a viable alternative to have a child of their own. However, the demand for children far outpaces the supply of orphans with the desired characteristics. The imbalance between the number of prospective adopters and the children available for intercountry adoption results in long waiting lists and high prices. The inordinate sums of money involved in the international adoption system have created a commercial ‘underbelly’ where unethical and illicit practices are employed to provide the adoption market with adoptable children. Children are being purchased or abducted from their families, hospitals or child care institutions and then trafficked to receiving countries as ‘orphans’. This paper aims to uncover and explain the factors of the German adoption system that are conducive to child trafficking for adoption purposes. It explains that the tension between money and integrity as experienced by German adoption agencies, blind trust in the authorities in the sending countries as well as a lenient control system encourage and facilitate the trafficking in children to Germany.

Keywords: child trafficking, intercountry adoption, market in adoptable babies, German adoption system

Procedia PDF Downloads 212
19 Fathers' Knowledge and Attitude towards Breastfeeding: A Cross Sectional Study

Authors: Jacqueline R. Llamas, Agnes Regal


Objective: To determine the breastfeeding knowledge and attitudes of fathers seen at the University of Santo Tomas Hospital. Design: Cross-sectional design. Setting: University of Santo Tomas Hospital (USTH). Participants: 156 fathers who were accompanying their wives/children at the USTH. Findings: Outcome of the Iowa Infant Feeding Attitude Scale showed fathers to be generally unbiased whether their child be fed breast milk or milk formula. About 85% agreed that breast milk is the ideal food for babies, 79% believed that breastfed babies are healthier than formula fed and 55% of them do not believe that breast milk lacks iron. About 80% agreed that it is easily digested, 87% are aware of the economical value and 57% agreed of its convenience. Breastfeeding support was noted when 55% of the fathers would encourage mothers to breastfeed so as not to miss the joys of motherhood, 91% believed that breastfeeding increased mother-infant bonding. About 57% do not feel left out whenever the mothers breastfeed. However, 46.6% support the decision of their wives to switch to formula feeding once they go back to work, 42% only find breastfeeding in public to be acceptable and 57% will not allow breast feeding to mothers who drink alcohol. Conclusion: In the study, although fathers’ attitude toward breastfeeding is unbiased towards breastfeeding or formula feeding, the majority of the fathers appreciate breastfeeding and its benefits. Also, how the father’s level of education, age, profession, household income and number of children had an effect on their attitude towards breastfeeding.

Keywords: father, breastfeeding, breast milk, knowledge

Procedia PDF Downloads 337
18 Mothers, the Missing Link: A Critical Discourse Analysis of the Women-Centric Counterterrorism Measures

Authors: Bukola Solomon


In counterterrorism, policymakers typically design a confined role for women as family members and nurturers. In recent years, they have embraced the idea of mothers as the missing link to preventing and countering violent extremism. This ‘programmed’ role of women is derived from the convictions that women’s central roles in the family and community afford them the ‘unique set of skills’ to detect early signs of radicalization and extremism. This paper attempts to focus on the ‘mother’ narrative that frames women’s agency as mothers of ‘terrorists’ and ‘potential’ terrorists. The general underlying assumption of the ‘mother’ narrative is that naturally, every ‘terrorist’ has or once had a mother, and their radicalization is a maternal ‘oversight.’ By deconstructing the notion of motherhood as a social construct instead of an inherent female desire and ability, this paper argues that the assumption of ‘mothers know best’ is invalid. Also, this paper suggests that the ‘mother’ narrative is a deliberate effort to restrict women’s participation in counterterrorism as ‘preventers.’ Finally, this paper notes a global trend in which mothers are contesting the dominant view of women empowerment that restricts their agency by seeking alternative versions in terrorist organizations. And as such, they create parallel terror cells. Thus, the overemphasis on the role women plays as mothers in counterterrorism limits the scope and potential of counterterrorism programs by marginalizing gender issues and reinforcing gender disparities to the extent that the programs become counterproductive.

Keywords: countering violent extremism, counterterrorism, gender, gender roles, terrorism, women

Procedia PDF Downloads 44
17 Spatial Integration at the Room-Level of 'Sequina' Slum Area in Alexandria, Egypt

Authors: Ali Essam El Shazly


The slum survey of 'Sequina' area in Alexandria details the building rooms of twenty-building samples according to the integral measure of space syntax. The essence of room organization sets the most integrative 'visitor' domain between the 'inhabitant' wings of less integrated 'parent' than the 'children' structure with visual ring of 'balcony' space. Despite the collective real relative asymmetry of 'pheno-type' aggregation, the relative asymmetry of individual layouts reveals 'geno-type' structure of spatial diversity. The multifunction of rooms optimizes the integral structure of graph and visibility merge, which contrasts with the deep tailing structure of distinctive social domains. The most integrative layout inverts the geno-type into freed rooms of shallow 'inhabitant' domain against the off-centered 'visitor' space, while the most segregated layout further restricts the pheno-type through isolated 'visitor' from 'inhabitant' domains across the 'staircase' public domain. The catalyst 'kitchen & living' spaces demonstrate multi-structural dimensions among the various social domains. The former ranges from most exposed central integrity to the most hidden 'motherhood' territories. The latter, however, mostly integrates at centrality or at the further ringy 'childern' domain. The study concludes social structure of spatial integrity for redevelopment, which is determined through the micro-level survey of rooms with integral dimensions.

Keywords: Alexandria, Sequina slum, spatial integration, space syntax

Procedia PDF Downloads 345