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Maternities and Modernities: Colonial and Postcolonial Experiences in Asia and the Pacific

Maternities and Modernities: Colonial and Postcolonial Experiences in Asia and the Pacific

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Cambridge University Press, 2/26/1998
EAN 9780521584289, ISBN10: 0521584280

Hardcover, 320 pages, 22.9 x 15.2 x 2.2 cm
Language: English
Originally published in English

Feminist theories have focused on contemporary, Western, middle-class experiences of maternity. This volume brings other mothers, from Asia and the Pacific, into scholarly view, aiming to show that birthing and mothering can be a very different experience for women in other parts of the world. The contributors document a wide variety of conceptions of motherhood, and drawing on ethnographic and historical research, they explore the relationships between motherhood as embodied experience and the local discourses on maternity. They show how the experience of motherhood has been influenced by missionaries, by colonial policies and by the introduction of Western medicine and biomedical birthing methods, and raise important questions about the costs and benefits of becoming a modern mother in these societies.

Introduction
colonial and postcolonial plots in histories of maternities and modernities Margaret Jolly
1. Shaping reproduction
maternity in early twentieth-century Malaya Lenore Manderson
2. Modernizing the Malay mother Maila Stivens
3. 'Good wives and mothers' or 'dedicated workers'? Contradictions of domesticity in the 'mission of sisterhood', Travancore, south India Jane Haggis
4. Maternity and the story of enlightenment in the colonies
Tamil coastal women, south India Kalpana Ram
5. The dai and the doctor
discourses on women's reproductive health in rural Bangladesh Santi Rozario
6. Other mothers
maternal 'insouciance' and the depopulation debate in Fiji and Vanuatu, 1890–1930 Margaret Jolly
7. Just add water
remaking women through childbirth, Anganen, Southern Highlands, Papua New Guinea Leanne Merrett-Balkos
8. From sisters to wives
changing contexts of maternity on Simbo, Western Solomon Islands Christine Dureau
Epilogue
maternal experience and feminist body politics
Asian and Pacific perspectives Kalpana Ram.

‘Ram and Jolly have put together a theoretically sophisticated and densely illustrated volume … it deserves a wide readership in anthropology and related disciplines.’ Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute