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Reading Pregnancy Advice: An Exploration of How and Why Women Consult Popular Pregnancy Advice Books

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Abstract:

In this presentation I examine a variety of issues concerning why and how women use popular pregnancy advice books. I explore pregnant readers’ evaluations of the pregnancy advice books they have read including their assessment of the trustworthiness of this advice compared to other sources such as female friends and physicians. Given that most women rank the information they receive from their physicians above that which they receive from female friends and (to a lesser extent) books, I also detail the uses of books in the context of women’s relationships with prenatal providers. Despite women’s reticence to criticize their providers, I show that books were used to compensate for deficiencies in doctor-patient communication and to facilitate the exchange of medical information. I pay particular attention to how women’s use of these books supports dominant medical definitions of pregnancy.

Most Common Document Word Stems:

women (129), book (108), pregnanc (64), medic (59), inform (43), advic (40), provid (32), read (29), know (27), experi (26), explain (26), call (25), friend (24), would (24), question (23), popular (20), doctor (18), time (16), like (16), pregnant (15), social (15),

Author's Keywords:

pregnancy, medicalization, advice literature, medical sociology, reproduction
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Name: American Sociological Association
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http://www.asanet.org


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MLA Citation:

Copelton, Denise. "Reading Pregnancy Advice: An Exploration of How and Why Women Consult Popular Pregnancy Advice Books" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, Hilton San Francisco & Renaissance Parc 55 Hotel, San Francisco, CA,, Aug 14, 2004 <Not Available>. 2009-05-26 <http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p110750_index.html>

APA Citation:

Copelton, D. A. , 2004-08-14 "Reading Pregnancy Advice: An Exploration of How and Why Women Consult Popular Pregnancy Advice Books" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Sociological Association, Hilton San Francisco & Renaissance Parc 55 Hotel, San Francisco, CA, Online <.PDF>. 2009-05-26 from http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p110750_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: In this presentation I examine a variety of issues concerning why and how women use popular pregnancy advice books. I explore pregnant readers’ evaluations of the pregnancy advice books they have read including their assessment of the trustworthiness of this advice compared to other sources such as female friends and physicians. Given that most women rank the information they receive from their physicians above that which they receive from female friends and (to a lesser extent) books, I also detail the uses of books in the context of women’s relationships with prenatal providers. Despite women’s reticence to criticize their providers, I show that books were used to compensate for deficiencies in doctor-patient communication and to facilitate the exchange of medical information. I pay particular attention to how women’s use of these books supports dominant medical definitions of pregnancy.

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Document Type: .PDF
Page count: 19
Word count: 5712
Text sample:
Reading Pregnancy Advice: An Exploration of How and Why Women Consult Popular Pregnancy Advice Books By Denise Copelton Popular pregnancy advice books are an important source of health information and education (Parrott and Condit 1996). Existing studies of reproductive health advice reveal that popular written sources do not challenge prevailing medical understandings of reproduction but support them (Gardner 1995; Oaks 2002; Marshall and Woollett 2000). These studies raise important questions concerning medicalization personal responsibility health lifestyles and the medical
as qualitative research. New York: Teachers College Press. Simonds W. (1992). Women and self-help culture. New Brunswick NJ: Rutgers University Press. Stoller-Shaw N. (1974). Forced labor: Maternity care in the United States. New York: Pergamon Press. Strauss A. & Corbin J. (1998). Basics of qualitative research: Techniques and procedures for developing grounded theory. Thousand Oaks CA: Sage Wertz R. & Wertz D. (1989). Lying-in A history of childbirth in America. New Haven CT: Yale University Press. Zola I.K. (1994).


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