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By: Maia Boswell-Penc
An in-depth analysis of infant nourishment issues, focusing on environmentally contaminated breastmilk.
Tainted Milk provides an in-depth analysis of the debate about infant nourishment issues, with a particular focus on environmentally contaminated breastmilk. Maia Boswell-Penc asks why feminists and environmentalists have, for the most part, remained relatively quiet about the fact that environmental toxins have been appearing in breastmilk. She argues that feminists avoid the topic because of their fear of focusing on biological mothering and essentialist thinking, while environmentalists are reluctant to be perceived as fearmongers advocating formula use and contributing to public hysteria. Boswell-Penc also points to the continuing racism, classism, ageism, and corporatization that leaves the less privileged among us more vulnerable.
"The level of scholarship, clarity of writing, and the importance of the topic and argument are excellent. The advocacy of breastfeeding is balanced with a recognition of the problems of contamination, and there is a careful effort to integrate an ecojustice approach that recognizes the greater risk of women of color to contamination." - Rosemary Radford Ruether, author of Sexism and God-Talk: Toward a Feminist Theology, Tenth Anniversary Edition
"Boswell-Penc clearly delineates the significance of the issues involved with toxins in breastmilk and the alarming ways that this contamination matters deeply to us all. She does a very good job helping us understand why most Americans lack any knowledge of the issue and why those we might expect to hear from about it have, for the most part, failed to adequately communicate it." - Ruth Ann Smalley, independent scholar.
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