Breastfeeding divisions in ethics and politics of feminism

Ignjatović, Suzana and Buturović, Željka (2018) Breastfeeding divisions in ethics and politics of feminism. Sociologija, 60 (1). pp. 84-95. ISSN 0038-0318

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The paper focuses on the ongoing “breastfeeding wars” in public discourse and feminist approaches to ongoing debates in this area. Feminist disputes over breastfeeding are found in every “wave” of the feminist movement, including the dominant contemporary political discourse of “gender mainstreaming”. For one, feminist divisions over breastfeeding are influenced by ideological and theoretical differences in feminism (Marxist, radical, libertarian and other positions), sometimes resulting in their convergence with other ideologies (for example, conservatism). However, a recurrent point of division is also whether breastfeeding has an empowering or alienating effect on women. For one group of scholars, breastfeeding is a liberating practice, while the other camp is criticizing breastfeeding promotion as a form of oppression. This underscores the point that issues concerning woman’s body, especially reproductive rights and sexuality, are the most critical source of ambivalence within the modern feminism. This has been evident in feminist positions on new reproductive technologies, parenthood, and finally breastfeeding, making them some of the most controversial subjects of feminist debates.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: feminism, breastfeeding, reproductive rights, bioethics, body
Institutional centre: Centre for political research and public opinion
Centre for sociological research and anthropological research
Depositing User: Vesna Jovanović
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2019 11:35
Last Modified: 03 Apr 2019 11:35

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