This book presents new interdisciplinary and intersectional research about women as mothers, highlighting that alternative accounts of mothering can challenge normative societal assumptions and broaden understandings of women as mothers, mothering and motherhoods.
Mothering occurs within unequal power relations associated with the disadvantages and privileges of an unjust and patriarchal society. Social inequalities associated with gender, race, class, age, ability, sexuality, violence and nationalism intersect in the lives of women as mothers, to shape their lived experiences and perspectives on mothering. Showcasing the breadth and depth of feminist research on mothering, this book gives attention to the diversity of ways in which mothering is constructed and responded to as well as how mothering is experienced. Drawing on intersectional feminist thought, the book challenges normative visions of ‘good mothering’ and interrogates constructs of ‘bad mothering’. It brings together insights from multidisciplinary scholars who use feminist approaches in their research on mothering, to inform policy development and practice when working with women as mothers in diverse circumstances. Intersections of Mothering highlights the complexities of mothering in a contemporary world, show the benefits of considering mothering through an intersectional feminist lens, make visible lived experiences of mothers and provides challenges to dominant imaginings of and service responses to women as mothers.
Intersections of Mothering will be essential reading for interdisciplinary scholars and students in criminology, gender and women’s studies, motherhood studies, social welfare, social work, social policy and public health policy, in addition to practitioners and policy workers that respond to women as mothers.
Table of Contents
Introduction: theorising intersectional feminism and mothering; PART I: REPOSITIONING MOTHERHOOD; ‘Out of bounds’: maternal regret and the reframing of normative motherhood; ‘Failed’ mothers, ‘failed’ womxn: demarcating normative mothering; ‘Woman’ and (un)partnered mother; Childcare as a public and common good: a Canadian perspective; PART II: DIVERSE CONTEXTS AND RESPONSES; Life’s a Mardi Gras: lesbian parenting in the context of ‘equality': '...we still have so far to go for full acceptance'; All in the same boat? Migration and motherhood online; Aboriginal mothering in the Australian context; Mothering without a home ; Too little, too late: mothers, children and parental terminations; PART III: VIOLENCE AND MOTHERING; Raising children born of war in Bosnia: reframing perspectives on mother love through a mother-daughter case study; Current mothering discourses and domestic violence: a double whammy; ‘We never quite measure up, do we?’: an intersectional approach to mothering, mental health and social inequality; ‘Just another side of the coin’: support for women as mothers in the context of domestic violence; Shifting practice in domestic violence: child protection workers partnering with mothers; Conclusion: beyond the intersections of mothering.
Carole Zufferey is a Senior Lecturer at the School of Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy, University of South Australia. She has published two previous books on homelessness with Routledge: Homelessness and Social Work: An Intersectional Approach (Zufferey, 2017) and Faces of Homelessness in the Asia Pacific (Zufferey & Yu (eds), 2018), as well as The Sexual Politics of Gendered Violence and Women’s Citizenship (Franzway, Wendt, Moulding, Zufferey & Chung, Policy Press, 2019).
Fiona Buchanan is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Psychology, Social Work and Social Policy, University of South Australia. She has published widely in international journals and authored four book chapters. Her book Mothering in Domestic Violence: Beyond Attachment Theory was published by Routledge in 2017.