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ANTH 2170 Lecture Notes - Morality Play, Sex Symbol

3 pages40 viewsSummer 2012

Course Code
ANTH 2170
Anna Pratt

of 3
Last Thursday:
Aimee Whiteout- politics of breastfeeding
Latching On: The Politics of Breastfeeding in America, 2006
Breast was suddenly shown as utilitarian object and
not an object that man go after
1. In what ways do race, ethnicity and/or class play a
role in decision-making re: whether or not to
In the black society breast-feeding was not socially
acceptable and had to do with slavery and they would not
even talk about it even if they breast fed whereas, in
the white society it is more socially acceptable.
Therefore, they were thinking of slavery so they did not
support breast-feeding. One woman described her view
“glam-mother” breast feeding as no option because no one
could afford formula. Class is an important factor so
people that are working in business you are not likely to
get paid for maternity leave. Whereas, people that work
for government usually get paid for their maternity
leave. Therefore, financial situations are an important
issue for families that are having babies. Also, the
issue of formula being expensive and may impact people’s
decision whether to buy formula or not. Notion of
morality, notion of sexuality- playing a role of “sexy”.
2. Historically, how have breasts been viewed/depicted in
our society and what role does this play in notions of
Female body is intervene with the Christian reality;
breast is campaigned the way breast cancer is “ boobies
are for men”; example: Angelina Jolie’s incident; breast
feeding you have to be in some way as “Sex symbol” and
“nurture” therefore, you can be both things but have to
be kept separate and by exposing breast in public you are
blurring out the boundaries. During the fashion show
women wanting to look sexy after caring a baby, and when
those two boundaries get blurred it pretty much becomes a
3. In what ways do mainstream notions of morality play a
role in the pervasiveness of breastfeeding?
It is important to breast feed but there still are issues
on breast feeding; it is the notion of what constitutes a
good mother and it’s the idea of one women mother to make
sure that your kid receives its needs through breast feed
and if you don’t feed there comes the role of “guilt” and
beating themselves up. Also lack of education can cause a
women not to breast feed.
Weismantel article:
Zumbagua in highlands of Ecuador
Looked at Ecuador and they are known for their
markets, selling produce
Population of about 12,000 people
“America is experiencing a crisis over consanguinity”
New/assisted reproductive technologies, adoptions,
surrogate parenting, and other phenomena challenge the
myth that “blood is thicker than water.”
Relates back to Schneider article: kinship is related
to notion of blood and schnieder talks about how
kinship is cultural constructed
Whereas, kinship in america is natural, and
biological; also blood we have this natural selection
and we tend to privilege as kin over other
relationships we have
Fictive kin (people who are not family but are like
family): pets, god parents, adoption
Adoption challenged the idea of blood is thicker than
water in North America
People will try to make non-blood relatives feel like
blood- relatives
Kinship is something that is made via “adoptions”
Kinship as fluid
Important in shaping social identity and determining
Food exchange
Kin is something that is fled and unchanging and the
idea of you are born in a family and can’t change
Schneider analyzed it by dominant kinship “derritive”
kinship terms that we are not close to in terms of
mother-in-laws, son-in-laws
Found that over course you adopt people as kin and see
them as you’re children, brother, sister
Kin is something that is you are not born in
Social relationship as mother or father
Kinship is fluid and is always changing
Kinship is formed through meals becomes a family even
though its not through family
Example: Christmas dinner, becomes special because you
want to share it with special people around you and
often times new kinship family forms
Linked to maggies article!!! And reproductive system
Breast-feeding is the political economy and is larger structure of class, race and how
people negotiate their lives
Economy is deeply politicized and is not free and fair and has deep political radification

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