The Paradox of Natural Mothering / Edition 1

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An intimate view of the family next door

Author Biography: Chris Bobel is Director, University of Cincinnati Women's Center, and Adjunct Professor, Center for Women's Studies, University of Cincinnati.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Chris Bobel, an associate professor of women's studies at the University of Massachusetts, takes a sociologist's eye and a feminist's heart to her study of a certain kind of parenting in The Paradox of Natural Motherhood. Through case studies of five women and interviews with dozens more, Bobel explores (admiringly and critically) how modern women can make seemingly old-fashioned choices to be full-time moms, to home-school their children or to practice alternative medicine. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781566399074
  • Publisher: Temple University Press
  • Publication date: 11/28/2001
  • Edition description: 1
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.00 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Table of Contents

1 Introduction: Five Women, Five Stories 1
2 Female Moral Reform and the Maternal Politics of Accommodation 35
3 A Closer Look: The Ideological Components of Natural Mothering 48
4 Interrogating the Ideology of Natural Mothering: Choice, Nature, and Inevitability 73
5 Resisting Culture, Embracing Nature: Natural Mothering and Control 104
6 Natural Mothering: Social Change or Narcissistic Retreat? 141
7 Conclusion 165
App On Being a (Quasi) Natural Mother Studying Natural Mothers 175
Notes 199
References 207
Index 217
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 17, 2002

    An Excellant Insite into the World of Natural Mothering

    Chris Bobel's first publication 'The Paradox of Natural Mothering' offers an intriguing glimpse into the lives of 32 'natural' mothers. Bobel offers to her reader's the experiences of these mothers, and their choices to resist consumerism, capitalism, technology, and the 'main stream' mothering culture. These mothers insteed, embrace ideas such as prolonged breastfeeding, homeschooling, organic food choice as the families main diet, and being fulltime stay-at-home mothers. The women discuss the many challenges they face from society, and from a culture that does not embrace or support many of their beliefs and values. Bobel wonderfully shows the paradox of these women. The women claim to resist the culture which does not put family first, and that it is simply the right, and natural thing to do, however they are submitting to the idea of 'nature' and as Bobel shows, this idea of 'nature' may have been created in our patriarcial society. The same society that these women are working against. This is must read for all women mother's or not, as well as the men in their lives who play a role in the family.

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