Drawing on her expertise as a academic researcher and as a writer of both non-fiction and fiction, Ann Oakley here tells the story of a research project as it has never been told before.
Moving far beyond the conventional format of the research report, this remarkable book develops a sociology of the research process itself, centering on the telling of a story about how and why the research came into being, and what happened when it did. It demonstrates, furthermore, that the research process today must be seen within the wider context of a crisis in contemporary culture concerning the status and gendering of knowledge.
Distinctively linking private troubles to public issues, Social Support and Motherhood investigates the connection between social relations and the health and well-being of women and their babies. At the same time, it calls into question the very definition of 'health' and probes the complex relations between social science research, academic 'knowledge' and public policy.
Developing many of the themes of her earlier work, Ann Oakley's new book will be welcomed by a wide range of readers.
About the Author
Ann Oakley is a sociologist, researcher and novelist who has written extensively in the area of gender roles, the situation of women, and medical sociology. She is currently Professor of Sociology and Director of the Social Science Research Unit at the London Institute of Education.
Table of Contents
Note on Numbers.
1. Social Origins.
2. 'A Friend a Day Keeps the Doctor Away': Social Support and Health.
3. Sickness in Salonica and Other Stories.
4. Eve in the Garden of Health Research.
5. A Bite of the Apple.
6. Who's Afraid of the Randomized Controlled Trial?.
7. 'One of Mummy's Ladies'.
8. Four Women.
9. 'Real' Results.
10. Women at Risk.
11. The Poverty of Research.
12. Models of Knowing and Understanding.
Appendix I: Study Guidelines.
Appendix II: Publications from the Social Support and Pregnancy Outcome Study.