By Amy Koerber
Breast or Bottle? is the 1st scholarly exam of the shift in breastfeeding thoughts taking place during the last part century. via an in depth research of clinical and scientific controversies and a serious exam of the ways that scientific ideals are communicated to the general public, Amy Koerber exposes layers of transferring arguments and which means that tell modern infant-feeding advocacy and coverage.
Whereas the word "breast or bottle" may well as soon as have implied a decision among relative equals, human milk is now believed to own designated health-promoting features. even though it is tempting to view this revision in scientific pondering as exclusively the results of clinical growth, Koerber argues progress-based interpretation is incomplete. Epidemiologic facts demonstrating the well-being merits of human milk has grown lately, however the tale of why those different types of facts have dramatically elevated in contemporary many years, Koerber finds, is a story of the committed participants, coalitions, and businesses engaged in relentless rhetorical efforts to enhance our medical motives and cultural appreciation of human milk, lactation, and breastfeeding within the context of a historic tendency to devalue those quite lady points of the human physique. Koerber demonstrates that the rhetoric used to advertise breastfeeding at a given time and cultural second not just displays a preexisting truth but in addition shapes the infant-feeding adventure for brand spanking new moms.
Koerber's claims are grounded in huge rhetorical study together with textual research, archival learn, and interviews with key stakeholders within the breastfeeding controversy. Her technique deals an important counterpoint to different feminist analyses of the shift towards probreastfeeding medical discourse and offers a revealing rhetorical case examine within the complicated dating among clinical facts and its impression on scientific coverage and practices. The ensuing interdisciplinary examine should be of willing curiosity to students and scholars of rhetoric, conversation, women's reports, clinical humanities, and public overall healthiness in addition to clinical practitioners and policymakers.
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Extra resources for Breast or bottle? : contemporary controversies in infant feeding policy and practice
Of course, the fears about vitamin D or iron deficiency in breastfed infants are more properly characterized as concerns about deficiency than about contamination or impurity per se. However, the divisions that surfaced within the AAP in response to these fears suggest a new trajectory for public discussions that would work against breastfeeding in a manner similar to the discourses on contamination and impurity that are the focus of Hausman’s analysis. The public controversies Infant Feeding and Rhetoric 29 that emerged because of these divisions within the AAP also suggest the poten tial for further changes in the rhetorical topography that situates our current understanding of the relationship between breast and bottle.
63 The emergence of the third topos, the notion of formula as risky, would seem to reinforce Joan Wolf’s perceptions about the current rhetorical situation. On a broader cultural level, this topos would also seem to reflect a tendency that many scholars have noted to rely increasingly on the dictates of biomedical expertise in anticipation that our present behaviors 30 Breast or Bottle? 64 Because the notion of formula as risky is the newest of the three topoi, it is also the least clearly defined and its outcome is the most uncertain.
47 The topos of formula as risky is also apparent in promotional and informative materials of various nonmedical organizations. ”48 Even as the topos of formula as risky continues to circulate, however, the efforts to refute breastfeeding advocates’ scientific arguments continue to gain momentum. As Bernice L. 49 Among those who have responded to the NBAC, feminist scholars have been some of the most vocal critics of the science that supports breastfeeding’s superiority. For example, even before the NBAC controversy flared, Jules Law published an influential article that characterized scientific knowledge about the benefits of breastfeeding as subject to a great deal of uncertainty: “Quite simply, much (though certainly not all) of what has been written about the relative merits of breastfeeding and formula feeding 26 Breast or Bottle?