The baby and the bath water: disabled women and motherhood in social context.

Thomas, Carol (1997) The baby and the bath water: disabled women and motherhood in social context. Sociology of Health and Illness, 19 (5). pp. 622-643. ISSN 0141-9889

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The aim of this paper is to explore key dimensions of the reproductive experiences of disabled women who are, or who are thinking about becoming, mothers. The paper reports a qualitative study which involved semi-structured interviews with 17 disabled women who were contemplating childbearing, or were pregnant, and/or had young children. The interpretation of these women's experiences is situated with reference to current debates on the meaning and nature of disability, and draws attention to the ways in which these experiences can be understood as manifestations of disablism. More specifically, the paper considers three themes which emerged in the data analysis: the women's engagement with the medical 'risk' discourse; the pressure felt by disabled women to demonstrate that they are, or could be, 'good enough mothers'; and their experiences of receiving unhelpful 'help' from health and social care workers.

Item Type:
Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title:
Sociology of Health and Illness
Uncontrolled Keywords:
?? women • disability • reproduction • motherhood • maternityhealth(social science)public health, environmental and occupational healthhealth policyr medicine (general) ??
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Deposited On:
28 Apr 2010 13:57
Last Modified:
28 Nov 2023 11:12