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Open Access Content loaded within last 14 days 'People try and police your behaviour': the impact of surveillance on mothers and grandmothers' perceptions and experiences of infant feeding

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This article is Open Access under the terms of the Creative Commons CC BY licence.

Pregnancy and motherhood are increasingly subjected to surveillance. Research has highlighted that public breastfeeding is difficult to navigate within existing constructs of acceptable femininity, but at the same time, mothers who formula feed are often located within discourses of the failed maternal subject. This article draws on intergenerational research with six mother/grandmother pairs from marginalised urban Welsh locales, which involved elicitation interviews around the everyday artefacts that participants presented to symbolise their experiences of motherhood and infant care. We examine the negotiation of acceptable motherhood in relation to the intrusive policing of lifestyle choices, consumption and infant feeding from family, friends and strangers. The article argues that the moral maze of surveyed motherhood renders infant feeding a challenging, and challenged, space for women.
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Keywords: BREASTFEEDING; INFANT FEEDING; INFANT FORMULA; MORALITY; MOTHERHOOD; PARTICIPATORY RESEARCH; QUALITATIVE RESEARCH; STIGMA; SURVEILLANCE; VISUAL METHODS

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Email: [email protected] 2: Email: [email protected] 3: Email: [email protected]

Publication date: 01 November 2018

This article was made available online on 20 March 2017 as a Fast Track article with title: "‘People try and police your behaviour’: the impact of surveillance on mothers and grandmothers’ perceptions and experiences of infant feeding".

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