Literary Mama writing about the many faces of motherhood
A Remedy for Mother Judgement


Well, first there were the CDC guidelines to treat all women as "pre-pregnant," as outlined in this article in the Washington Post and subsequent MetaFilter dicussion.

Then there was the breastfeeding awareness campaign that equated not breastfeeding with riding a mechanical bull while pregnant, as detailed in the New York Times article, Breast-Feed or Else.

And then, the constant policing of mothers was recently brought to light in the mainstream media by the Britney Spears interview on NBC's Dateline.

It's a tough time to be a mother.

Thankfully, there is a wave of mothering activism which is countering the mother judgement., a grassroots organization dedicated to moving motherhood and family issues to the forefront of US politics, is one such group. It was founded by Joan Blades and Kristen Rowe-Finkbeiner, authors of The Motherhood Manifesto. Literary Mama recently became one of their aligned organizations.

Recently, Judy Stadtman Tucker, founder of Mothers Movement Online, an organization founded to promote economic and social justice for mothers and caregivers, was the guest of honour at a Bay Area Mother Talk. Literary Mama Reviews Editor Rebecca Kaminsky gave her recount of the evening:

The latest Bay Area Mother Talk's guest of honor, Judy Stadtman
Tucker, founder of Mothers Movement Online, led a discussion that
lasted late into the night. We all left with our "inner activists"
energized. Judy is dedicating her life to being at the forefront of
the new Mothers' Movement, and it shows in that she came into our
small group of Mothers and immediately had everyone involved in the
discussion. The evening's topics included: how we can best further our
cause, the meaning of "caregiving" and the place it should hold in
the world of "work", the role writers play in activism, the latest
in rocker mama bands, if and where "mommy wars" take place, parents'
rights in the workplace, and what we'd like the USA to look like in
ten years with mothers (and fathers and all caregivers) in mind. The
evening's guests included Motherlode members Ursula Goulet, Sarah
Raleigh Kilts, and Rebecca Kaminsky; Bloggermom and LM contributor
Mary Tsao; and attorney and motherhood activist Charlotte Fishman.
For a more detailed recap of the evening check out Mary Tsao's
blogpost here -- and be sure to check out the comments which
include a fascinating back and forth between readers and author of the
MMO essay "Lucky": Shannon Hyland-Tassava. Thanks to everyone for a
wonderful evening!

Jen Lawrence is an MBA and former banker who left the world of finance for the world of sippy cups and goldfish crackers. She writes about her experiences on her blog MUBAR (Mothered Up Beyond All Recognition). She is an Editorial Assistant for Literary Mama’s Reviews section and also contributes to the Literary Mama blog. Her work has appeared in The Philosophical Mother. She lives in Toronto, Canada with her husband and two children.

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I think (and hope) activist mothers are going to be the new wave in politics. We're tired of people talking about how we are at war with each other and I think we're ready to focus on more important battles -- issues like getting more of us to vote, fighting to keep the environment as clean as possible and universally good day care for mothers who don't have a choice about whether to work or stay at home.
I'm so glad to see someone else concerned about these issues. Keep up the great work on the blog. I love reading what you have to say.
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