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To celebrate the twentieth anniversary of Sharon Hays’ landmark book, The Cultural Contradictions of Motherhood, this collection will revisit Hays’ concept of “intensive mothering” as a continuing, yet controversial representation of modern motherhood. In Hays’ original work, she spoke of “intensive mothering” as primarily being conducted by mothers, centered on children’s needs with methods informed by experts, which are labourintensive and costly simply because children are entitled to this maternal investment. While respecting the important need for connection between mother and baby that is prevalent in the teachings of Attachment Theory, this collection raises into question whether an over-investment of mothers in their children’s lives is as effective a mode of parenting, as being conveyed by representations of modern motherhood. In a world where independence is encouraged, why are we still engaging in “intensive motherhood?”
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About the Author
Linda Rose Ennis, Ph.D, is a psychoanalytic therapist in private practice, a family mediator, an author, lecturer, affiliated with York University. Her education includes the following; a Ph.D. in Psychology and Education; a Masters in Education; a Diploma in Child Study and a teaching degree from the University of Toronto. She has written and spoken extensively on her research in her area of expertise, “On Combining Motherhood With Employment”, which was the first qualitative piece done in this area. She has written contributions in the Encyclopedia of Motherhood, discussing the “empty nest”, the “mommy track”, and has contributed a chapter entitled “Contract-Faculty Mothers: On The Track To Nowhere” in O’Brien Hallstein & O’Reilly’s book entitled Academic Motherhood in a Post-Second Wave Context (Demeter Press: 2012). Most recently, she has published her edited collection, Intensive Mothering: The Cultural Contradictions of Modern Motherhood (Demeter Press: 2014).