Raising Generation Rx: Mothering Kids with Invisible Disabilities in an Age of Inequality

Raising Generation Rx: Mothering Kids with Invisible Disabilities in an Age of Inequality

by Linda M. Blum


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Raising Generation Rx: Mothering Kids with Invisible Disabilities in an Age of Inequality by Linda M. Blum

Recent years have seen an explosion in the number of children diagnosed with “invisible disabilities” such as ADHD, mood and conduct disorders, and high-functioning autism spectrum disorders. Whether they are viewed as biological problems in brain wiring or as results of the increasing medicalization of childhood, the burden of dealing with the day-to-day trials and complex medical and educational decisions falls almost entirely on mothers. Yet few ask how these mothers make sense of their children’s troubles, and to what extent they feel responsibility or blame. Raising Generation Rx offers a groundbreaking study that situates mothers’ experiences within an age of neuroscientific breakthrough, a high-stakes knowledge-based economy, cutbacks in public services and decent jobs, and increased global competition and racialized class and gender inequality.

Through in-depth interviews, observations of parents’ meetings, and analyses of popular advice, Linda Blum examines the experiences of diverse mothers coping with the challenges of their children’s “invisible disabilities” in the face of daunting social, economic, and political realities. She reveals how mothers in widely varied households learn to advocate for their children in the dense bureaucracies of the educational and medical systems; wrestle with anguishing decisions about the use of psychoactive medications; and live with the inescapable blame and stigma in their communities.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781479871544
Publisher: New York University Press
Publication date: 03/13/2015
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Linda M. Blum is Associate Professor of Sociology at Northeastern University. She is the author of Between Feminism and Labor: The Significance of the Comparable Worth Movement (1991) and At the Breast: Ideologies of Breastfeeding and Motherhood in the Contemporary United States (1999).

Table of Contents

List of Tables vi
Acknowledgments vii
1. Mother-Child
Troubles, Past and Present 1
2. “Welcome to Your Child’s Brain”: Mothers Managing Dense 35
Bureaucracies, Medications, and Stigma
3. “The Multimillion-Dollar
Child”: Raising Kids with Invisible 90
Disabilities in the Context of Privilege
4. “I Think I Have to Advocate Five Thousand Times Harder!”: 137
Single Mothers in the Age of Neuroscience
5. En-gendering
the Medicalized Child 176
6. “A Strange Coincidence”: Race-ing
Disordered Children 210
7. Mothers, Children, and Families in a Precarious Time 237
Notes 257
References 285
Index 303
About the Author 311

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