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Title: Exploring the experiences of women who breastfeed long-term
Author: Dowling, Sally
ISNI:       0000 0004 2744 770X
Awarding Body: University of the West of England, Bristol
Current Institution: University of the West of England, Bristol
Date of Award: 2013
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This thesis reports the results of qualitative research using ethnographic methods to explore the experiences of women who have breastfed long-term. Data collection methods included participant observation in three breastfeeding support groups, face-ta-face interviews and online asynchronous interviews using email. A clear contribution to new knowledge has been demonstrated in a number of areas. Knowledge has been furthered by presenting in-depth, rich findings about the experience of an under-researched group in a sensitive area. Placing these within the context of a cross-disciplinary perspective and by using insider research methods has strengthened their authenticity and credibility. The Social-Ecological Model is used both to structure a review of relevant literature and to underpin the thesis as a whole, demonstrating the complex social and cultural contexts within which women breastfeed long-term. Findings, from a group of strong-willed and determined women show that breastfeeding long-term is a rewarding but challenging commitment, often undertaken in the absence of societal support. Theoretical concepts of liminality, stigma and taboo are explored within the thesis and used as a lens through which to view the findings from the study. Previous work using these concepts to think about breastfeeding is drawn on and developed to further understanding of the experiences of long-term breastfeeding.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: University of the West of England
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available