This book presents new interdisciplinary and intersectional research about women as mothers, highlighting that alternative accounts of mothering can challenge normative societal assumptions and broaden understandings of women as mothers, mothering and motherhoods.

Mothering occurs within unequal power relations associated with the disadvantages and privileges of an unjust and patriarchal society. Social inequalities associated with gender, race, class, age, ability, sexuality, violence and nationalism intersect in the lives of women as mothers, to shape their lived experiences and perspectives on mothering. Showcasing the breadth and depth of feminist research on mothering, this book gives attention to the diversity of ways in which mothering is constructed and responded to as well as how mothering is experienced. Drawing on intersectional feminist thought, the book challenges normative visions of ‘good mothering’ and interrogates constructs of ‘bad mothering’. It brings together insights from multidisciplinary scholars who use feminist approaches in their research on mothering, to inform policy development and practice when working with women as mothers in diverse circumstances. Intersections of Mothering highlights the complexities of mothering in a contemporary world, show the benefits of considering mothering through an intersectional feminist lens, make visible lived experiences of mothers and provides challenges to dominant imaginings of and service responses to women as mothers.

Intersections of Mothering will be essential reading for interdisciplinary scholars and students in criminology, gender and women’s studies, motherhood studies, social welfare, social work, social policy and public health policy, in addition to practitioners and policy workers that respond to women as mothers.

chapter 1|12 pages


Theorising intersectional feminism and mothering
ByCarole Zufferey, Fiona Buchanan

part I|2 pages

Repositioning motherhood

chapter 2|15 pages

‘Out of bounds’

Maternal regret and the reframing of normative motherhood
ByAndrea O’Reilly

chapter 3|14 pages

‘Failed’ mothers, ‘failed’ womxn

Demarcating normative mothering
ByCatriona Ida Macleod, Tracey Feltham-King, Jabulile Mary-Jane Jace Mavuso, Tracy Morison

chapter 4|13 pages

‘Woman’ and (un)partnered mother

ByAmy Andrada

chapter 5|18 pages

Childcare as a public and common good

A Canadian perspective
ByMaki Motapanyane, Adian McFarlane

part II|2 pages

Diverse contexts and responses

chapter 6|13 pages

Life’s a Mardi Gras

Lesbian parenting in the context of ‘equality’: ‘… we still have so far to go for full acceptance’
ByMargot Rawsthorne

chapter 7|14 pages

All in the same boat? Migration and motherhood online

ByLeah Williams Veazey

chapter 8|13 pages

Aboriginal mothering in the Australian context

ByAmy Parkes, Carole Zufferey

chapter 9|11 pages

Mothering without a home

ByCarole Zufferey

chapter 10|11 pages

Too little, too late

Mothers, children and parental terminations
ByDeseriee A. Kennedy

part III|2 pages

Violence and mothering

chapter 11|15 pages

Raising children born of war in Bosnia

Reframing perspectives on mother love through a mother–daughter case study
ByTatjana Takševa

chapter 12|12 pages

Current mothering discourses and domestic violence

A double whammy
ByFiona Buchanan

chapter 13|12 pages

‘We never quite measure up, do we?’

An intersectional approach to mothering, mental health and social inequality
ByNicole Moulding

chapter 14|14 pages

‘Just another side of the coin’

Support for women as mothers in the context of domestic violence
BySimon Lapierre

chapter 15|12 pages

Shifting practice in domestic violence

Child protection workers partnering with mothers
ByCathy Humphreys, Margaret Kertesz, Lucy Healey, David Mandel

chapter 16|4 pages


Beyond the intersections of mothering
ByCarole Zufferey, Fiona Buchanan