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From private to public bodies: Normalising pregnant bodies in Western culture

Dwyer, Angela E. (2006) From private to public bodies: Normalising pregnant bodies in Western culture. Nexus: Newsletter of The Australian Sociological Association, 18(3), pp. 18-19.

Abstract

I recently had the painful pleasure of bringing into the world a baby boy. As I already had a five year old boy, I didn’t expect that the experience would be very different from the last and, to a large extent, I was correct. There was the usual battery of assessments, scans, tests, and other surveillance techniques that I had expected in producing my unborn child as a ‘case’ of proper antenatal care (Rose, 1990). However, there was one element of being pregnant that, although I no doubt encountered with my first pregnancy, left me continually analysing the bodily practices associated with pregnant embodiment in my second pregnancy: my body be(com)ing a public space. I want to briefly consider my experiences with inhabiting the new, more public bodily space of pregnancy and the different ways in which my usually private body came to constitute a public space. I conclude by examining the possibilities and tensions that may then arise for young pregnant girls in this regard.

Impact and interest:

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ID Code: 11251
Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: For more information, please refer to the publisher's website (see hypertext link) or contact the author.
Additional URLs:
Keywords: pregnancy, pregnant, bodies, female body, normalisation, normalising, private, public, surveillance, embodiment, public space, young girl, visual
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > CULTURAL STUDIES (200200) > Culture Gender Sexuality (200205)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > LANGUAGES COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE (200000) > CULTURAL STUDIES (200200)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > OTHER STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (169900) > Gender Specific Studies (169901)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIOLOGY (160800)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Law
Current > Research Centres > Law and Justice Research Centre
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2006 (please consult author)
Deposited On: 19 Dec 2007
Last Modified: 09 Jun 2010 22:51

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