This book analyzes why and in what circumstances teenage women become mothers. The author does not condemn early motherhood as a problem, but focuses on both positive and negative aspects of these women's experiences. A central part of the author's analysis are first-hand accounts by women who have become mothers before the age of twenty. Among other areas, she discusses the women's attitudes towards their pregnancy, towards men and marriage, and towards the social services upon which many young mothers rely. She also examines how the concept of teenage motherhood has been socially constructed and contrasts many of society's negative conceptions with the women's own personal perceptions and experiences.
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- Paperback | 250 pages
- 152 x 229mm | 384g
- 01 Jan 1991
- Polity Press
- Oxford, United Kingdom
- index, references
Table of contents
Setting the scene; demographic trends in early motherhood; how the women came to be mothers; men and marriage; social networks and emotional support; practical support; the children; young women as mothers - employment, education and satisfaction with motherhood.
'The first extended study to be carried out on this subject.' The Guardian 'A detailed, longitudinal study.' New Statesman and Society 'Young Mothers makes a credible case against accepting common views on teen motherhood, prima facie. It is highly regardable ... provides interesting firsthand evidence on the experiences of young mothers, and helps place those experiences in class context.' American Journal Of Sociology 'This is a nuanced account of teenage motherhood that challenges established orthodoxies on the subject.' Studies on Women Abstracts 'This book should prove interesting reading to those working in community health care of researching the subject.' Nursery World 'In adding to this prolific literature, Ann Phoenix makes two valuable and related contributions. The first is the deconstruction of young mothering as problematic. The second is the presentation of findings from a rich and extensive set of accounts from young women, aged between 16-19 years, of their experiences of mothering. Ann Phoenix raises important questions for future research and social policy. The book is of central relevance and written so as to be accessible to a wide audience. It should be a key text for academic, welfare and health professionals.' Journal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology