Volume Eight, Issue 1
Gillian M Craig [*
Apart from the actual bearing and
suckling of children, there is
probably no act which better epitomises the maternal role than the
preparation and serving of food (Newson and Newson, 1970)
Food loathing is one of the most
elementary and most archaic
forms of abjection (Kristeva 1982,
In recent years the topic of the body has taken on increasing
significance in the medical and social sciences (Williams, 1997).
Williams cites a range of factors responsible for the growing interest
including: the role of technological innovations with the potential to
transform the body, and anxieties about the impact of HIV and AIDS
and other debilitating conditions. Turner (1995) has also
pointed to the way ‘lifestyle aesthetics’ have
dominated contemporary consumer culture.
Theorists have conceptualised the body as a project which is intimately
connected with self and identity (Shildrick,
1997). Feminism, both in wider society and the academy, is
implicated in the ‘bodily turn’ because of the way discourses of the
biological body have been used to either (mis)represent women’s bodies
and their experiences (Ussher, 1989)
or discriminate against women in
education, employment and lego-political life (Weedon,
1988). Reproductive technologies have been a particular issue for
feminists in terms of women’s control over their own fertility and
access to such technologies (eg IVF, contraception and abortion)
mediated through the regulatory apparatus of the state. This has
given rise to claims that rather than benefiting from reproductive
technologies, women and women’s bodies have been exploited by a male
dominated science and medical profession (Stanworth,
Moreover Gatens (1996) suggests feminists
have failed to theorise
adequately the relationship between women’s bodies and the state
despite women’s attempts to gain autonomy over their bodies (witness
various campaigns for safe and effective contraception and abortion).
The privileging of the body then sits uncomfortably with some
feminists, not least because of the concern that this represents a move
towards a biological determinism which has social and economic effects
for those deemed to have ‘inferior’ bodies. Conversely, others have
regarded bodily technologies as "the solution to the problem of the
deviant body" (Valentine, 2001, p.
45). The metaphor of ‘the cyborg’
(Haraway, 1990) has been invoked for its
liberatory potential in
transgressing borders between "human, organism and machine" (Lykke and
Braidotti, 1996, p. 5). Cyborgs, it is argued, permit a "recoding
body and self" (Valentine, 2001, p.
59) in order to produce a subjectivity
that is both trans-historic and un-gendered. As such the cyborg is
embraced as a site of possibilities and political contestation
(Haraway, 1990; Casper, 1995).
However the celebration of techno-bodies is rendered particularly
complex when considering disabled children and their bodies. Children
with neuro-developmental disabilities, for example those diagnosed as
having severe cerebral palsy, are characterised as having ‘feeding
difficulties’, including high rates of dysphagia (ie. ‘abnormal’
swallow reflex and oro-motor development). This means they are unable
to achieve an adequate nutritional intake by mouth with consequences
for their growth and development. Mothers may spend prolonged periods
of time feeding a child a relatively small portion of food, such as a
few teaspoons of solids. Indeed some mothers report spending between
five and seven hours a day feeding a child. Mothers often describe
mealtimes as ‘difficult’ as children can choke and splutter when
feeding. In extreme cases children can turn blue as food is aspirated
(swallowed) into the lungs. Accounts of children drooling,
regurgitating or vomiting, both during and following mealtimes, not
only challenges the idealised image of mother and child but
exemplifies, perhaps, the ‘sheer messiness of corporeality’
(Shildrick 2005, p. 7).
Due to the risk of oral aspiration, which has been associated with
respiratory distress and poor respiratory health (eg aspiration
pneumonia), some professionals may caution mothers against oral
feeding. Conversely others may encourage mothers to ‘persevere’ and
increase the quantity of food to boost growth or to feed their child
more often; in short, ‘try harder’. This sets up a conflict
whereby discourses of ‘nurturing’ are constructed as harmful and women
are positioned into monstrous mothers for feeding (harming) their child
or ‘blamed’ for failing to feed enough food to sustain the
Advances in medical science then offer to reconfigure a child with an
alternative way of feeding through a gastrostomy tube surgically
inserted into the child’s stomach to assist growth and, in some cases,
provide an alternative to oral feeding. Additionally, where indicated,
clinicians may recommend an anti-reflux procedure (ARP). This
involves ‘tying’ the stomach to prevent its contents -- including food
and acid (‘reflux’) -- flowing back up into the oesophagus resulting in
heartburn, regurgitation, vomiting and the consequent risk of
aspiration (where food/acid is swallowed into the airway/lungs)
with consequences for children’s respiratory health.
However the prospect of a surgical intervention involving an
alternative way of feeding a child raises ambivalence in mothers about
the potential for change. I will suggest that this ambivalence,
in part, reflects an anxiety about changes in children’s identities and
embodiments constructed through the medium of feeding and associated
Abjection is a theoretical explanation of the psychic processes of
disgust (Kristeva, 1982) and, according
to Smith (1998, p. 33),
illustrates ‘the power and importance of visceral reaction as a
representation of what is happening in the psyche’. Kristeva
describes abjection as part of the process of separation between mother
and child. In demarcating difference between self and the body of the
engulfing (m)other, the child expels all that is unclean which it
associates with the mother’s body in order to preserve its own
‘clean and proper’ self (Segal, 1999; Kristeva,1982). The abject is
associated with all that is repulsive and, in particular, those aspects
of bodily experience which threaten the integrity of the body. For
Kristeva, the abject is not an object but the boundary between the pure
and the impure, the clean and the unclean and life and death.
This creates a fear of things without clear boundaries (Segal,
1999). Horror and disgust are therefore constructed at the
interface of the ‘clean and proper’ body (Kristeva,
1982, p. 8):
thus not lack of cleanliness or
health that causes abjection but
what disturbs identity, system, order. What does not respect borders,
positions, rules. The in-between, the ambiguous, the composite
Abjection is of interest to feminists because of its potential in
challenging the distinction between mind and body. Cartesian
dualism it is argued, supports a particular construction of the
individual which, in Western liberal democracies, represents a cultural
ideal; that of the autonomous, rational, and hence disembodied, male
(Bridgeman, 2000; Sampson, 1977). Moreover, emotions
horror and disgust sit uneasily within the psychic economy and disrupt
the rationalist, masculinist body-machine metaphor which represents
children’s bodies as objects to be operated on and ‘fixed’. Abjection
then is a useful analytic as it disturbs the hegemonic norm
underpinning medical constructions of the closed and stable body.
In this paper I analyse constructions of mothering and feeding disabled
children. Drawing on examples from previous work (Craig,
2005; 2004; Craig and Scambler, 2006)
I illustrate ways
feeding technologies impact on children’s
identities and embodiments and relations with others. I will
illustrate how mothers' attempts at feeding and caring for their
disabled child and children’s in/ability to feed are both rendered
abject within dominant discourses of mothering.
In previous work (Craig, 2004; Craig and Scambler, 2006)
I described how
parental constructions of feeding technologies distinguished
between the gastrostomy tube as an object (the gastrostomy -- body
interface), the stoma (the hole created in the stomach where the tube
is inserted) and the actual experiences of feeding by tube. I
elaborate on these accounts briefly to illustrate what happens to
children’s identities (as known by their parents) and embodiments when,
‘ the material structure or function of the body’ is altered through
surgical intervention (Price
and Shildrick, 1999, p. 276).
Going against nature
Feminists have been concerned to challenge the link between women and
nature because of the tendency to naturalise and privilege
particular representations of knowledge and establish universal truths
(Saraga, 1998); truths which can be
applied in exclusionary ways for,
if something is natural, we cannot change it.
Kristeva (1982, p. 75) suggests food
becomes abject ‘only if it is a border
between two distinct entities or territories. A boundary between nature
and culture, between the human and the non-human’. Analysis of parental
constructions of feeding technologies reflected a tension at the
intersection of these boundaries. Their accounts suggested they both
accepted and resisted ‘cyborg identities’ in relation to their child
and both (re)produced and refused the nature/culture binary. For
example, parental assertions that a gastrostomy tube was going against
nature drew on a naturalised discourse and constructed a dualism
between nature and medicine.
Anxieties about medical interference in nature were apparent in one
mother’s comment that the ‘gastrostomy was not given by God’, rather it
was a ‘human being doing it to another human being’. Here she
drew on a pre-Enlightenment discourse. The Enlightenment was
characterised by the shift from religion as a traditional source of
authority towards science as the arbiter of knowledge (Bondi and
Burman, 2001). By drawing on a pre-Enlightenment discourse this
challenged the primacy of medicine as an expert knowledge and its
attempts to dominate nature.
However mothers also acknowledged that their child needed more food and
better nutrition than they were physically able to eat or drink by
mouth which, presumably, was their child’s ‘natural’ state. Parents
were then faced with the prospect of going against ‘nature’ in order to
sustain the child. Constructions of the tube as ‘unnatural’ or ‘alien’
and as an ‘undesirable object’ hanging out of their child’s body, were
weighed against the potential health benefits the technology promised
to confer; that of (re)producing the effects of
‘normal eating’ and growth.
Parental accounts constructed different kinds of feeding technologies
and associated surgical procedures along the dimensions of:
temporary-permanent, reversible-irreversible and interior-exterior.
These different feeding configurations underpinned anxieties about
transformation and change in terms of children’s identities and
relations with others.
In the following account Ricki’s mother constructed the gastrostomy
tube in terms of its transformatory capacity relative to a nasogastric
tube (tube inserted through the nose to deliver food into the stomach).
Her account constructed a dualism between the temporary-permanent
aspects of tubes:
"a few operations that he has had done
things were being taken out from
him, like cataracts or when stitches were being removed, but this is an
operation that’s going to be a tube going to be put down in his stomach
and it’s going to be connected to him and thinking of that sort of
upset us, oh Ricki’s going to be fed from a tube, or something is going
to be stuck to his stomach. Because the tube in his nose you can put it
in and out, some days he’ll have it in his nose and some days he won’t,
so he’ll be just Ricki again." [Ricki’s, mother ]
The temporary aspect of the nasogastric tube (i.e. it can be removed)
serves to normalise the child - ‘he’ll just be Ricki again’ - whereas a
gastrostomy tube ‘permanently’ attached to a child’s stomach, was
constructed as something that would transform the child’s identity as
recognised by others, especially his parents. By way of contrast, other
mothers constructed nasogastric tubes as a permanent attribute of the
child, given that in many cases the need for a feeding tube was firmly
established shortly after the child’s birth.
In the same way comparisons were made between nasogastric and
gastrostomy tubes as ‘fixed’ and ‘natural’, parents used similar
constructions when talking about the antireflux procedure (ARP). One
mother judged the ARP to be more ‘unnatural’ than a gastrosotmy
tube because the former was constructed as a permanent
intervention (ie irreversible) while the gastrostomy was seen as
a temporary one which, in theory, could be removed if the child’s
feeding and weight ‘normalised’:
"whilst the tube isn't natural, I mean
it's not natural having a tube
in your tummy, somehow the, the, having your what oesophagus pulled
down and your tummy tied round, all sounded totally sort of unnatural,
and sort of irreversible. I mean his tube [gastrostomy] can be
whipped out, you know what I mean, whereas the [ARP] certainly
did seem like a very permanent situation, it sounded totally
unnatural." [Edward’s mother]
Other surgical interventions (eg. a shunt) were also implicated in the
‘othering’ of children. In these accounts parents constructed
difference not only through the insertion of an object into the body
(corporeal alteration) but in terms of things the child would be
prevented from doing: for example, not able to feed by mouth or ‘burp’
or ‘vomit’; functions which were considered to be the
natural prerogative of the child. These bodily processes of ingesting
and expelling constituted normality, the absence of which demarcated
difference. Interfering with these processes was constructed as a
denial of normality and an infringement of the rights of the child:
"I mean he’s special in a sense already
that he has a shunt and a
gastrostomy and then we want to make him special .. by well you can’t
be sick and you can’t burp, and we want him to have, you know lead a
normal life. So that’s why I would have liked to have seen him without
the [ARP] and maybe like gone to the [ARP] if it was really that bad,
or if he was still vomiting a lot." [Joshi’s father]
Separation and distance
Parental accounts also reflected a concern about the potential of
feeding technologies and their impact on physical contact: for
example, whether the gastrostomy (constructed as a ‘foreign object’)
might deter others from ‘touching’ the child (eg cuddling the child).
Parental constructions suggested that the ‘public’ fear of intimate
contact with children by virtue of their disability would be
intensified by the gastrostomy tube. This exemplifies, perhaps, the
‘urge’ to protect oneself against the polluting effects of the abject
other through physical distance and separation.
However as Price and Shildrick (2002,
that both structures and is structured
by everything from psychodynamic processes to socio-political power’.
This is no better illustrated than by the increasing regulation of
physical contact with children in many institutional settings where
‘non-touching’ policies exist which serve, perhaps, to protect adults
against accusations of abuse (Lipsett, 2008).
itself gendered with boys more likely to be
engaged in ‘rough’ and ‘tumble’ play than girls who are also
constructed as delicate and fragile (Belotti,
Other mothers suggested that it was the fear of loss of intimate
contact with children, which they constructed through mealtimes and
oral feeding, that accounted for their resistance to tube feeding.
Although mothers drew on militaristic metaphors to describe their
experiences of feeding children as a ‘battle’ or ‘war’ they also
constructed feeding as a time for intimacy and physical closeness. For
example mothers often found it easier to sit the child on their lap in
order to feed, contrary to the advice of feeding experts. In some cases
mothers described feeding as an activity that both mother and child
engaged in together (‘she’s not doing it, I’m not doing it, we’re doing
it together’). Physical contact therefore had to be re-negotiated
within a modernist discourse of separation (Price and Shildrick, 2002)
which then invited the risk of accusation from professionals that
mothers were ‘over-protective’.
Mother’s experiences of feeding therefore revealed identity as an act
of relation. Moreover, the construction of feeding as an interdependent
activity ascribes a personal agency to the child otherwise elided
within medical discourse which constructs disabled children as passive.
The notion of interdependency challenges both the dominant discourse of
separation which, Price and Shildrick (2002) argue, structures most
caring relations, and the able-bodied/disabled dichotomy.
Bodily difference --
horror and disgust
Within medical discourse the word ‘stoma’ is used to refer to the cut
or hole in the stomach where the gastrostomy is inserted.
Parental accounts constructed a difference between a nasogastric and a
gastrostomy tube in terms of a hole in the stomach artificially created
to accommodate the gastrostomy. One parent compared it with a
pre-existing hole, the nostril, which was a ‘natural’ opening.
Some mothers drew on a discourse of disgust to describe their feelings
and reaction to the stoma (‘It didn’t seem alright to me, I was
disgusted really. I didn't like it’).
Gross (1990, p. 88), drawing on the work
of Lacan, suggests erogenous zones
are defined in relation to ‘spaces’ which demarcate the boundaries
between the inside and outside of the body: for example, ears, mouth
and nose. These sites define what is inside the body, and
therefore part of the person (subject), and what is outside the body,
and therefore constitutes an object (other). The linking of the inside
and outside of the body is apparent from parental accounts of
gastrostomy complications including stoma-related infections. The
following extract nicely illustrates one mother’s abject reaction when
cleaning the child’s stoma and confronted with the side-effects
of a surgical procedure:
‘I was hysterical, absolutely
hysterical, and I was I don’t know what
it is, what’s happening, it’s gone all black so I rang the nurse and
she came out and she said it [the stoma] was over-granulating. And um,
where I’ve been cleaning it, she was obviously leaking some gastric
fluids which was causing it to redden, but it wasn’t actually, it was
this infection that was on the inside, I couldn’t get in because it was
one [gastrostomy tube] that you couldn’t get out of the tummy, it was
stuck in the tummy, and there was that. And obviously then I
experienced um, um, when Cathy wasn’t well, and when I aspirated back I
was drawing back blood, ….like lumps of blood which panicked me as
Here the mother’s sense of panic is conveyed in relation to the
uncertainty over the exact nature of the leaking material (whether food
or waste) and its source: inside or outside the child’s body. As
Kristeva (1982, p. 9) states: "abjection
is above all ambiguity". In this
example the gastrostomy deconstructs the food/waste-inside/outside
dichotomy. The adverse side-effects of the surgical intervention
generates a further source of abjection (ie. leaky stoma) which,
somewhat ironically, challenges the very aim of the surgical
procedure; to effect closure on the body and render it both knowable
Although the account Cathy’s mother narrated is atypical (and chosen
explicitly for the purpose of illustration), gastrostomy tube/site
related complications are common and can be distressing for mothers,
not only in terms of the aesthetical appearance and the assumed
discomfort children may experience, but also the need to learn new
nursing procedures in caring for the gastrostomy site.
Parental reactions when confronted with images of tubes, scars and the
stoma - sometimes oozing or infected - can be explained in terms of
the way such images challenge normative constructions of children’s
bodies. Whereas bodily orifices (mouth, ears and eyes) are eroticised,
the stoma/gastrostomy represents ambivalence because it displaces the
mouth as the site where feeding and, potentially, pleasure take place.
Both the stoma and the gastrostomy, constructed as medical and
artificial but also associated with feeding (and assumed pleasure),
create ambiguity and hence, the abject. A medical intervention
involving tubes, holes and scarring serves to de-eroticise the child’s
body, denying pleasure to both mother and child (Craig, 2005).
Burman (1994, p. 240) argues that
children who do not conform to the
idealised images of childhood, such as disabled children, ‘sit
uneasily’ within the psychic economy. Such images contravene normative
expectations of children sentimentalised as pure and innocent. Thinness
is often equated with ill health and sickness in young children. Being
thin and ‘malnourished’ not only signifies illness but also adds to the
construction of children as very disabled. In the same way that women’s
bodies are deemed to be closer to nature than men’s, children’s bodies
are also naturalised; the surgical insertion of a feeding tube then
transgresses the purity of the child.
Images of feeding technologies then create a tension as they transgress
boundaries positioned at the interface of what is inside and outside
the body; what is potentially lifesaving but may also incur the risk of
pain or perhaps death (due to the risks involved in surgery) while at
the same time offering the potential for ‘normalising’ a child through
health and weight-gain but at the risk of ‘othering’ the child by
making her different (Craig, 2005).
Feeding technologies are designed to correct the child’s ‘deviant’ body
and offer the promise of protection against those aspects of feeding
and growth that are sources of abjection: for example, emaciated
bodies, regurgitation and vomit. The parallel with women’s
‘leaky’ bodies is perhaps worth noting. Historically women’s
bodies have been constructed as unreliable and unstable vis-a-vis their
reproductive function and medical interventions have been marshalled to
restore the ‘deviant’ body. Medicine then is part of the regulatory
apparatus which "maintains unreliable body borders" (O’Connell,
2005. p. 219).
However the shifting and unstable nature of children’s identities,
constructed through the medium of feeding interventions, suggest that
rather than civilise the body, medical technologies may actually render
the body less knowable and certain, particularly to the children’s
parents. Science then both regulates and disrupts the body in its
ability to "disturb conventional understandings of self" and others
(O’Connell, 2005, p. 227).
Identity transformation may not always be interpreted negatively
however as many parents wish to see their child transformed
from sick to well and from poorly nourished to well nourished and
therefore do consent to feeding interventions. However for families,
particularly women, the decision to have a feeding tube surgically
inserted into their child’s stomach is rarely straightforward. As
O’Connell (2005, p. 225) states,
science plays at ‘the boundaries of
identity, which, although it offers a means of producing a clean and
proper body, also inspires an anxious social response’.
Disability activists have criticised the way technology has been used
to produce the effects of ‘normality’. Similarly, the possibility of
‘re-building’ a child (ie through health and weight-gains) raises
ambivalence in parents about the potential for change. Yet to some
extent disabled children are already ‘technologised’ with the insertion
of grommets, shunts, and cochlear implants so why, we might ask, would
a gastrostomy be any different in terms of parental acceptance of
children’s ‘cyborg’ identities?
Woodward (1997) suggests that in
‘Western’ culture constructions of
motherhood are iconified by a dominant discourse of Judeo-Christianity,
the madonna and child representing an idealised image of
motherhood. Idealised images of the maternal set up expectations
about motherhood and desire. Feeding disabled children either orally or
by tube transgresses the ‘usual rules’ associated with the ‘nurturant’
mother and, therefore, challenges the idealisation of the maternal in
the (Western) cultural imaginary. These conflicts may, in part,
explain why some women were ambivalent about the decision to have a
gastrostomy inserted in their child. As Flax, (1990,
Moreover, children’s bodies that fail to conform to standardised norms
reflect badly on women’s parenting skills. Disabled children are not
usually held responsible for their situation, although their mothers
may be. Child care manuals often give the impression that disability is
something that can and should be avoided (Marshall,
if a woman has a disabled child she feels responsible and is blamed.
Women may also blame themselves for having a disabled child and the
recommendation of a gastrostomy further questions their ability to
mother for having failed to establish feeding, as signified by their
child’s thinness and poor growth. In previous work (Craig,
2004; Craig and
Scambler, 2006) I analysed discourses of blame in
relation to regimes of governmentality (Foucault, 1988)
vis-à-vis the disciplinary practices which govern aspects of
mothering and feeding (Rose, 1989).
As such a father with an
emaciated, disabled child is more likely to attract sympathy while a
mother will experience blame.
So far I have demonstrated that feeding disabled children challenges
the idealisation of the ‘nurturant’ mother and renders women’s
mothering as abject as they perform the dual function of
mother/carer. However, although abjection can be used as a
lens to both reflect upon and disrupt medicine’s mechanistic and
reductive view of the body and the idealisation of mothering and
feeding, I am left feeling dissatisfied with the transgressive
potential of abjection.
Although every society may have its own abject, this does not
satisfactorily explain abject reactions towards particular groups of
people and the ways in which disability, gender, race and class
intersect in (re)constituting the other. Feeding disabled children
blurs the ‘boundary’ between mothering and caring. While accepting that
there are aspects of caring that may be pleasurable (and I am wary of
(re)producing dominant discourses of disabled people as a burden, a
point which feminists have been criticised for in the past) there are
also economic, social and psychological costs in relation to
caring for a disabled child. As Susan Wendell (1999)
such, discourses of the body and abjection, need to be relocated
within the material experiences of disability. In this context we might
question whether a focus on abjection is in danger of depoliticising
mothering and (gendered) relations of care. For example, women
tend to be the major caregivers of children and perform care giving
tasks that arguably should be done in the formal health care sectors.
Difficulties accessing support such as respite care and the additional
costs families incur in caring for a disabled child can also impact
adversely on women’s psychological health and the wellbeing of their
families. The different roles women perform therefore need to be
acknowledged and the policy implications of being more than ‘just a
I would like to thank the anonymous peer reviewer for comments on
an earlier draft.
Belotti, E.G. (1987). Little girls. London:Pluto Press
Bondi, L. and Burman, E.
(2001). Women and mental health. Feminist Review 68, 6-33.
Bridgeman, J. (2000).
Embodying our hopes and fears. In:
Bridgeman, J. and Monk, D. (Eds.) Feminist perspectives on child
law, (pp. 207-226). London: Cavendish.
Burman, E. (1994). Innocents abroad:
Western fantasies of childhood and
the iconography of emergencies. The
Management, 18, 238-253.
Casper M.J. (1995). Fetal cyborgs and
technomoms on the reproductive frontier: Which way to the carnival? In
Gray, CH., Figueroa-Sarriera,
HJ., and Mentor, S. (Eds.) The
handbook, (pp.183-202). London:Routledge.
Craig, G.M. and
Scambler, G. (2006). Negotiating mothering against
the odds: Gastrostomy tube feeding, stigma, governmentality and
disabled children. Social Science
and Medicine, 62 (5), 1115-1125.
Craig G.M. (2005). Mother knows
Best: Gastrostomy feeding and disabled children. Psychology of Women
Section Review, 7 (1), 31-39.
Craig, G. M. (2004). Mother knows
best: Gastrostomy feeding in disabled
children professional and parental discourses, PhD thesis,
Creed, B. (1993). The monstrous feminine:
Film, feminism and psychoanalysis. London: Routledge.
Flax, J. (1990). Thinking fragments. Oxford,
University of California Press, Ltd.
Foucault, M. (1988). Technologies
of the self. In: Martin, L.H.,
Gutman, H. and Hutton, P.H., (Eds.) Technologies of the self: A
seminar with Michel Foucault., (pp.
16-49). London: Tavistock
Gatens, M. (1996). Imaginary bodies: Ethics, power and
Gross, E. (1990). The body of
signification. In: Fletcher, J. and
Benjamin, A. (Eds.) Abjection,
melancholia and love -- The work of
Julia Kristeva, (pp. 80 - 103). London: Routledge.
Haraway, D. (1990). A manifesto for
cyborgs: Science, technology, and socialist feminism in the 1980s. In:
Nicholson, L. J. (Ed.)
Kristeva, J (1982). Powers of horror: An essay on abjection.
Lipsett, A (2008, February 27). Fearful
staff from touching children.
Lykke, N. and Braidotti,
R. (1996). Between monsters,
goddesses and cyborgs: Feminist confrontations with science, medicine
Marshall, H. (1991). The social
construction of motherhood: An analysis
of childcare and parenting manuals. In: Phoenix, A.,
Woollett, A. and Lloyd, E. (Eds.) Motherhood,
ideologies, pp. 66-85. London: Sage
Newson, J. and Newson, E.
(1970). Four years old in an
urban community, second edition. Middlesex: Penguin.
O’Connell, K. (2005). The devouring:
Genetics, abjection, and the limits
of law. in Shildrick, M. and Mykitiuk, R. (Eds.) Ethics
of the body: Postconventional challenges, (pp.217-234). London:
Price, J and Shildrick, M.
(2002). Bodies together: Touch, ethics and disability, In Corker, M and
Shakespeare, T (Eds.)
disability theory, (pp. 62-75). London:
Rose, N. (1989). Governing the soul: The
shaping of the private self.
Sampson, E. (1977). Psychology and
the American ideal.
Journal of Personality and Social
Psychology 35, 767-781.
Saraga, E. (1998). Embodying the social:
constructions of difference.
London: Routledge in association with OUP.
Segal, L (1999). ‘Body matters: Cultural
inscriptions’ in Price, J. and Shildrick, M (Eds.). Feminist theory and the body: A reader.
Shildrick, M. (2005). Beyond the body
of bioethics: Challenging the conventions. In Shildrick, M. and
Mykitiuk, R. (Eds.). Ethics of
the body: Postconventional challenges (pp.1-26). London: MIT
Shilling, C. (1997). The body and
difference. In Woodward, K. (Ed.).
Identity and difference,
Milton Keynes: The Open University.
Showalter, E (1988). The female malady.
Women, madness and English culture, 1830-1980. London:Virago.
Smith, A. (1998). Julia Kristeva. London: Pluto.
Stanworth, M. (1987). Reproductive technologies,
in association with Blackwell.
Turner, B.S. (1995). Medical power and social knowledge.
Ussher, J. M. (1989). The psychology of the female body.
Valentine, G. (2001). Social geographies space and society.
Weedon, C. (1989). Feminist practice and postructuralist
edition. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.
Wendell, S. (1999). Feminism, disability,
and transcendence of the body. In Price, J. and Shildrick, M (Eds.). Feminist
reader, (pp.324-333). Edinburgh:Edinburgh University Press.
Williams, S.J. (1997). Modern medicine
and the “uncertain body”: From corporeality to
Medicine, 45, 1041-1049.
Woodward, K. (1997). Identity and difference. The Open
Gill Craig is Lead for the Centre for Disability and Social Inclusion,
School of Community and Health Sciences, City University London, UK.
Gill’s teaching and research interests include the experience of
disability, chronic illness and social inclusion. Her PhD examined
professional and parental discourses in relation to gastrostomy feeding
technologies and women’s experiences of caring for disabled children as
part of a major clinical evaluation. This work was awarded a
postgraduate prize by the British Psychological Society, Psychology of
Women section. Other interests include maternal identities and
subjectivities, abject bodies, user involvement, feminism and discourse