The Cultural Contradictions of Motherhood / Edition 1

The Cultural Contradictions of Motherhood / Edition 1

by Sharon Hays
     
 

ISBN-10: 0300076525

ISBN-13: 9780300076523

Pub. Date: 09/28/1998

Publisher: Yale University Press

"Hays's intellectually incendiary Cultural Contradictions could add needed nuance to feminist thought-and perhaps ignite change in mothersí overburdened lives."-Phyllis Eckhaus, The Nation

"A lucid, probing examination of our culture's contradictory and troubled relationship to motherhood-and how it affects mothers. . . . A thoughtful analysis of the

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Overview

"Hays's intellectually incendiary Cultural Contradictions could add needed nuance to feminist thought-and perhaps ignite change in mothersí overburdened lives."-Phyllis Eckhaus, The Nation

"A lucid, probing examination of our culture's contradictory and troubled relationship to motherhood-and how it affects mothers. . . . A thoughtful analysis of the paradoxes that surround mothering. Hays is sensitive to the emotional issues involved-and equally astute in perceiving their sociopolitical context."-Kirkus Reviews

"A thoughtful and carefully written new book that provides excellent material for family demography or women's studies courses at the graduate level."-Sandra L. Hofferth, American Journal of Sociology

An ideology of 'intensive mothering' exacerbates the inevitable tensions working mothers face, claims sociologist Sharon Hays. While women are expected to be nurturing and unselfish in their role as mothers, they are expected to be competitive and even ruthless at work. Drawing on ideas about mothering since the Middle Ages, on contemporary childrearing manuals, and on in-depth interviews, Hays shows that 'intensive mothering' is a powerful contemporary ideology. These unrealistic expectations of mothers, she suggests, reflect a deep cultural ambivalence about the pursuit of self-interest.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300076523
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
09/28/1998
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
272
Product dimensions:
6.14(w) x 9.21(h) x 0.75(d)

Related Subjects

Table of Contents

Preface
1Why Can't a Mother Be More Like a Businessman?1
2From Rods to Reasoning: The Historical Construction of Intensive Mothering19
3"What Every Baby Knows": Contemporary Advice on Appropriate Child Rearing51
4Sorting the Mail: The Social Bases of Variations in Mothering71
5Intensive Mothering: Women's Work on Behalf of the Sacred Child97
6The Mommy Wars: Ambivalence, Ideological Work, and the Cultural Contradictions of Motherhood131
7Love, Self-Interest, Power, and Opposition: Untangling the Roots of Intensive Mothering152
Appendix AInterview Questions179
Appendix BSurvey Questionnaire182
Notes195
Bibliography227
Index245

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