Breastfeeding women run up against an issue: the fact that breasts are sexualized and fetishized in American culture. … They emphasized the need to be discreet, without showing the entire breast—“being an invisible breastfeeding mother was the goal for many women,” Stearns observed.
Why is breastfeeding sexualised?
Social disapproval of public breastfeeding is attributed to the sexualisation of the breast. Breasts have dual functions in Western contexts: as a body part that is sexually attractive and involved in sexual activity but that also provides milk and nurture to children .
Why is breastfeeding in public such a big deal?
According to Amy Bentley, breastfeeding became taboo in North America due to our perception of the function of women’s breasts. … “As breasts became more sexualized, they became less functional: more the purview of men as sexual objects and less the domain of infants and as a source of food.”
When did breastfeeding become sexualized?
In her book Inventing Baby Food: Taste, Health, and the Industrialization of the American Diet, Amy Bentley argues that distaste for public breastfeeding in the US began with the sexualization of female breasts in the 19th century and was accelerated by the rise in processed baby food occurring around the same time.
Can you be kicked out for breastfeeding?
Breastfeeding in public is legal in all 50 states across the U.S., but it often doesn’t feel that way with the frequent stories of moms getting kicked out of places for nursing.
What’s the big deal with breastfeeding?
A mom spending time with her baby improves the infant’s ability to feel secure in relationships. Lots of studies have shown that children who have been breastfed have a reduced risk of being overweight, obese, and having Type 2 diabetes later in life.
Why did breastfeeding become unpopular?
During the early 20th century, breastfeeding started to be viewed negatively, especially in Canada and the United States, where it was regarded as a low class and uncultured practice. The use of infant formulas increased, which accelerated after World War II.
How long can a woman produce breast milk?
WHO’s guidelines recommend “continue[d] frequent, on-demand breastfeeding until two years of age or beyond. The vast majority of mothers can produce enough milk to fully meet the nutritional needs of their baby for six months.
Is breastfeeding illegal anywhere in the world?
All fifty states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands have laws that specifically allow women to breastfeed in any public or private location. Thirty-one states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands exempt breastfeeding from public indecency laws.