Skip to main content

The politics of abortion, pregnancy, and motherhood

Sutton, Robbie M. and Murphy, Amy O. and Petterson, Aino and Douglas, Karen (2022) The politics of abortion, pregnancy, and motherhood. In: Osborne, Danny and Sibley, Chris G., eds. The Cambridge Handbook of Political Psychology. Cambridge Handbooks in Psychology . Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, UK, pp. 272-283. E-ISBN 978-1-108-77910-4. (doi:10.1017/9781108779104) (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided) (KAR id:93562)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)
Official URL
https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108779104

Abstract

Pregnancy and motherhood are among the most cherished experiences of many women, but for many others are involuntary or unwanted. In either case, they are ideologically loaded and politically consequential. We review various lines of research across the social sciences documenting some of the myths surrounding pregnancy and motherhood, and some of the taboos, restrictions, and discrimination to which pregnant women and mothers are subjected. Our review encompasses opposition to abortion, ‘financial abortion’, paternalistic control over women’s reproductive and lifestyle choices, the motherhood penalty, and antagonism to women’s autonomy in conservative, libertarian, and populist politics. Drawing on social psychological theory, we argue that these phenomena have obvious roots in male dominance but also in idealised, reverential attitudes to pregnancy and motherhood. We conclude that unchecked, they will prevent women from achieving economic and social parity with men.

Item Type: Book section
DOI/Identification number: 10.1017/9781108779104
Uncontrolled keywords: Abortion, Sexism, Motherhood, Political ideology, Gender inequality
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Women
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Karen Douglas
Date Deposited: 11 Mar 2022 16:24 UTC
Last Modified: 14 Mar 2022 13:55 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/93562 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Sutton, Robbie M.: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-1542-1716
Douglas, Karen: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-0381-6924
  • Depositors only (login required):