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The Politics of Breastfeeding: When Breasts Are Bad for Business

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As revealing as Freakonomics, shocking as Fast Food Nationand thought provoking as No Logo, The Politics of Breastfeeding exposes infant feeding as one of the most important public health issues of our time. Every thirty seconds a baby dies from infections due to a lack of breastfeeding and the use of bottles, artificial milks and other risky products. In her powerful book As revealing as Freakonomics, shocking as Fast Food Nationand thought provoking as No Logo, The Politics of Breastfeeding exposes infant feeding as one of the most important public health issues of our time. Every thirty seconds a baby dies from infections due to a lack of breastfeeding and the use of bottles, artificial milks and other risky products. In her powerful book Gabrielle Palmer describes how big business uses subtle techniques to pressure parents to use alternatives to breastmilk. The infant feeding product companies’ thirst for profit systematically undermines mothers’ confidence in their ability to breastfeed their babies. An essential and inspirational eye-opener, The Politics of Breastfeeding challenges our complacency about how we feed our children and radically reappraises a subject which concerns not only mothers, but everyone: man or woman, parent or childless, old or young. 3rd fully revised and updated edition.


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As revealing as Freakonomics, shocking as Fast Food Nationand thought provoking as No Logo, The Politics of Breastfeeding exposes infant feeding as one of the most important public health issues of our time. Every thirty seconds a baby dies from infections due to a lack of breastfeeding and the use of bottles, artificial milks and other risky products. In her powerful book As revealing as Freakonomics, shocking as Fast Food Nationand thought provoking as No Logo, The Politics of Breastfeeding exposes infant feeding as one of the most important public health issues of our time. Every thirty seconds a baby dies from infections due to a lack of breastfeeding and the use of bottles, artificial milks and other risky products. In her powerful book Gabrielle Palmer describes how big business uses subtle techniques to pressure parents to use alternatives to breastmilk. The infant feeding product companies’ thirst for profit systematically undermines mothers’ confidence in their ability to breastfeed their babies. An essential and inspirational eye-opener, The Politics of Breastfeeding challenges our complacency about how we feed our children and radically reappraises a subject which concerns not only mothers, but everyone: man or woman, parent or childless, old or young. 3rd fully revised and updated edition.

30 review for The Politics of Breastfeeding: When Breasts Are Bad for Business

  1. 4 out of 5

    Katie

    This should be required reading for every pediatrician, maternity ward employee, ob/gyn, midwife, doula, and parent.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jen Bracken-Hull

    Like Half the Sky, this is another book I think everyone should read; prospective parents, parents and general civilians. I was shaking with anger while reading how companies marketing "infant formula" knowingly disadvantage or kill children born in developing countries (and, to a lesser extent, in developed nations) for pure profit. EVIL. I quote a review printed on the back of the book because I agree with it so much: "This book is authoritative about the evidence for breastfeeding, while makin Like Half the Sky, this is another book I think everyone should read; prospective parents, parents and general civilians. I was shaking with anger while reading how companies marketing "infant formula" knowingly disadvantage or kill children born in developing countries (and, to a lesser extent, in developed nations) for pure profit. EVIL. I quote a review printed on the back of the book because I agree with it so much: "This book is authoritative about the evidence for breastfeeding, while making one's blood boil about the folly and, alas sometimes, venality of the social and commercial forces that stop this vital function of early life and parenting from being the norm." Even thought I breastfed my daughter (with a somewhat rough start and sadly for only 6 months), I learned A LOT about breastfeeding from this book and definitely have a list of things I will do differently with a future baby. A side note, if you are a staunch defender of unrestrained capitalism with absolutely no willingness/desire to hear about some of its ugly side-effects* this book is just too radical for you. *P.S. You scare me.

  3. 5 out of 5

    kyliemm

    A lot of this book was an angry rant, which made it hard to distinguish fact from fiction as the author presented things in her book. That said, I felt that overall, in spite of the anger, she made some incredibly valid points that changed my opinion not only about breastfeeding but culture and politics and stuff like that. Also, I didn't expect it to be a Marxist/Feminist/Postcolonial-based book, but it was, and that was awesome (ranting aside). A lot of this book was an angry rant, which made it hard to distinguish fact from fiction as the author presented things in her book. That said, I felt that overall, in spite of the anger, she made some incredibly valid points that changed my opinion not only about breastfeeding but culture and politics and stuff like that. Also, I didn't expect it to be a Marxist/Feminist/Postcolonial-based book, but it was, and that was awesome (ranting aside).

  4. 5 out of 5

    Rhea

    The only sad thing about this book is that it will only be read by the already converted, but it needs to be read by those who are not. If you don't find this fascinating and would still rather reach for the artificial stuff, you have misunderstood. The only sad thing about this book is that it will only be read by the already converted, but it needs to be read by those who are not. If you don't find this fascinating and would still rather reach for the artificial stuff, you have misunderstood.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Stephanie

    I would like to give this book 3.5 stars. I skimmed over a good part of it because the writing was unbearably dull at times and somewhat disorganized, but overall I think that what I did read was worth reading. In this book Palmer illustrates the social, political, and institutional barriers to breastfeeding throughout the world and offers solutions (some more appealing than others in my opinion) to these problems. I was struck by and even appreciative of her candid and unapologetic condemnation I would like to give this book 3.5 stars. I skimmed over a good part of it because the writing was unbearably dull at times and somewhat disorganized, but overall I think that what I did read was worth reading. In this book Palmer illustrates the social, political, and institutional barriers to breastfeeding throughout the world and offers solutions (some more appealing than others in my opinion) to these problems. I was struck by and even appreciative of her candid and unapologetic condemnation of formula and its makers and marketers and other supporters (i.e., government). I also found her discussion of how formula promotion, distribution, and use in poorer countries leads to declined health and sometimes even death for babies and mothers fascinating--I suppose I take for granted my unlimited supply to clean water, etc. Lest anyone fear that Palmer would argue to take away infant-feeding choices from mothers, here is what she has to say on the subject: Every woman has the right to make decisions about her body. Any coercion to breastfeed is not just morally unacceptable, it is impractical; in the end only a woman and her baby can make breastfeeding happen. A woman has the right not to breastfeed, but she must be fully informed of the effects on her child and herself. And of course in many places not breastfeeding can mean death. Every woman has a right to that knowledge and to be supported to breastfeed. (345) Sadly I believe that most women in the US are not fully informed about breastfeeding and formula, nor do they receive the support they deserve should they choose to breastfeed. I think that perhaps this quote best summarizes what this book is all about: Constraints in health systems, ignorance, commercial misinformation and greed, inhumane and unimaginative working systems, distorted cultural values and political blindness all come together to destroy the entitlement [right] of women to sustain their children's health and lives, and protect their own bodies. (340)

  6. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    This book could have been so wonderful. It had a ton of fascinating information about the history and cultural issues surrounding breastfeeding. The problem is that it really should have been titled "The Anti-Capitalist Politics of Breastfeeding." It was sometimes like reading a book on breastfeeding written by Karl Marx. Corporations do bear a lot of fault for the prevalence of formula feeding in our culture. (As do governments and the medical community.) But a hunter-gather society is not pref This book could have been so wonderful. It had a ton of fascinating information about the history and cultural issues surrounding breastfeeding. The problem is that it really should have been titled "The Anti-Capitalist Politics of Breastfeeding." It was sometimes like reading a book on breastfeeding written by Karl Marx. Corporations do bear a lot of fault for the prevalence of formula feeding in our culture. (As do governments and the medical community.) But a hunter-gather society is not preferable to an industrialized society. It's just not. Look at mortality rates, or really ANY statistic aside from rates of breastfeeding. That's just a ridiculous assertion. However, the book had some fascinating information if you can read it with a critical eye and take the whole "capitalist pigs" parts with a grain of salt.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    Totally eye opening. Everyone should read this book. Incredible forces have shaped the way we think about women and babies. So much of the dogma in child-rearing and infant care based on nothing but arrogance. Thank you for writing this book, Gabrielle Palmer!

  8. 5 out of 5

    Amy Alice

    Hit and miss. I so wanted this to not just be an attack on formula companies but alas, it was. While I agree that big corporations are generally evil, I was hoping for more balance. However, lots of chapters in this were fascinating. The history of breastfeeding and general feeding practice, how it shaped hunter gatherer and agricultural practice, and things like its economical and ecological value. She just went a bit mad in the middle about nestle. It needed to be said, but it was too much.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Emma

    I would love to be able to give this book five stars as I fully agree with its aim; sadly, it is a poorly written, repetitive, ranty polemic which possibly damages the cause it is arguing for. Having said that, it is worth reading as there are so few books attempting to break the cycle of ignorance surrounding the nasty tactics multinationals use to destroy the normality of breastfeeding. I recommend it, even if the writing is atrocious.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Cass

    This book is incredibly well referenced. Every comment and quote is annotated, making it a fabulous resource for anyone interested in, well, the politics of breast feeding. There is some seriously eye- opening stuff within the book. It beggars belief how blatant formula companies are, how bad the formula is for society, and how the have been allowed to grow into multinational companies that control the way woman interact with their offspring. Excellent resource.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Dani

    MUST read for every mother. I say mother because she is the one making the decision to breast feed or not. If you read this and still happily go and grab the 'Artificial Infant Milk' then you should read it again because you have missed the message. Also a good and informative read if you're interested in how companies f with our trust and take our money with zero concern for our welfare. MUST read for every mother. I say mother because she is the one making the decision to breast feed or not. If you read this and still happily go and grab the 'Artificial Infant Milk' then you should read it again because you have missed the message. Also a good and informative read if you're interested in how companies f with our trust and take our money with zero concern for our welfare.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Tanja Russita

    Yes, it was definitely wonderful! Sometimes not an easy reading, somehow it seemed too long, sometimes depressing and sometimes obvious, but at the end very, very helpful in understanding the subject. And must-read for everybody who is interested in it.

  13. 5 out of 5

    amy

    you thought you knew about breastfeeding...

  14. 5 out of 5

    Marisa

    Well thought out and written. After reading this it's easy to see why we are where we are with our current breastfeeding rates. Well thought out and written. After reading this it's easy to see why we are where we are with our current breastfeeding rates.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Natasha Hurley-Walker

    Absolutely fascinating and compelling discussion of every facet of the intersection between breastfeeding and politics, covering topics as wide ranging as: the history of breastfeeding including wet nursing; the impact of the advent of agriculture and industrialisation; the role of women in society in relation to childcare and breastfeeding; and in its most horrifying chapters, a meticulous and hard-hitting description of the ways in which the medical profession has colluded with commercial manu Absolutely fascinating and compelling discussion of every facet of the intersection between breastfeeding and politics, covering topics as wide ranging as: the history of breastfeeding including wet nursing; the impact of the advent of agriculture and industrialisation; the role of women in society in relation to childcare and breastfeeding; and in its most horrifying chapters, a meticulous and hard-hitting description of the ways in which the medical profession has colluded with commercial manufacturers of artificial baby food to displace breastfeeding with inappropriate foods, taking advantage of the secondary position of women in society to push them away from an activity that literally defines us as mammals. The most shocking image is of a mother in India who has been told she cannot make enough milk for both her babies, so "must" artificially feed one of them. The leftmost, breastfed baby, is healthy and chubby. The rightmost, drinking one of the vitamin-deficient and indigestible formulas pushed on the developing world, is an emaciated skeleton child, and the caption says she died the next day. The photo was taken in 1986, and even thirty years later, artificial milk manufacturers advertise and give free samples to women in hospitals in the developing world, particularly in ex- British and American colonies. This is quite literally murder. I'm so fortunate that here in Australia the medical establishment is fully in favour of breastfeeding, and if you want to use formula in a hospital, you must first sign a waiver acknowledging that you are taking a risk with your baby. I think packaging laws should be stronger, and "follow-on" milk banned, but at least we're not in the awful situation where women are told they "don't have enough milk" or "failure is to be expected". Let-down and production being strongly dependent on stress, undermining words coupled with the trauma of birth and sleep deprivation can be enough to deprive a mother of her milk production. We should be positive about every mother's inherent ability to provide for her baby. I am docking a single star from this book because while Palmer did for the most part blame the medical establishment for undermining women's faith in breastfeeding, not the women themselves, she didn't address tongue tie, which is a huge factor in whether breastfeeding is comfortable. Current estimates are that around 5-10% of babies are born with a tongue tie, and inflict horrible pain on their mothers. It used to be routine for tongue ties to be cut by midwives, but this knowledge has been lost. I think it is a non-negligible effect, at least on par with the unsupportive messaging at hospitals which she decries so thoroughly. I was challenged by this book to think about how in the developed world, the modern workplace completely displaces children, even when it would not be difficult or unsafe to include them. I immediately thought of when, six months after the birth of my first child, I wished to return to work before daycare started. I had a good routine with my son at that point; I knew I would be able to get around four to six hours work done during his nap and playtimes: all I needed was an empty office and baby change facilities. I would be happy to reduce my pay or work longer total hours. My (female) boss was horrified. Even though there was an empty corner office near the bathroom away from everyone else, she absolutely forbade me from coming in and working with the baby, and told me she expected me to make other arrangements such as my husband taking three weeks off. An office is not a factory, and yet the lingering remnants of the industrial revolution tell us that young children are absolutely incompatible with the workplace, even though it has been the norm for women to work and bring their children along for the bulk of human existence. This is a great book, The Shock Doctrine for breastfeeding :)

  16. 5 out of 5

    Pujitha Padmanabhan

    The book starts with why breastfeeding is political. The author then goes on to talk about a range of topics from benefits of breastfeeding to wet nursing to how the industrial revolution brought about changes in breastfeeding habits. It ends by talking about the value of breastfeeding from an ecological perspective. Written using a feminist lens, this book is an important book because it presents a ton of information about different aspects of breastfeeding. It talks in great lengths of how mark The book starts with why breastfeeding is political. The author then goes on to talk about a range of topics from benefits of breastfeeding to wet nursing to how the industrial revolution brought about changes in breastfeeding habits. It ends by talking about the value of breastfeeding from an ecological perspective. Written using a feminist lens, this book is an important book because it presents a ton of information about different aspects of breastfeeding. It talks in great lengths of how market forces undermine the importance of mother’s milk while aggressively pushing commercial infant formula upon new parents. Often times, the number of barriers to breastfeeding are huge- social, political and institutional ones, and it was eye opening to read the ugly nature of the babyfood business. It was also shocking to read about how harmful the promotion/distribution of formula can be/has been in poorer countries, being detrimental to children’s health, even causing deaths. Having said that, I would also say that this book was an incredibly dull book, which is a pity coz the information in here is valuable. The writing, however, didn’t make for a pleasant reading experience. It felt like a drag, and a tad too repetitive. In my opinion, one should take a look at this book for the facts, but may probably need to skim through several segments to be able to finish it.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Charity Dušíková

    So I can’t say I read every page; my pregnancy hormones just couldn’t handle the section about the lack of clean water in many parts of the world and what that means for mothers who are feeding infants formula mixed with impure water. What I did read was very compelling. This book explores the origins of infant formulas as well as the social impact that breastfeeding or formula feeding has—economically, medically, and so forth. I think for anyone interested in politics, rights, nutrition, or soc So I can’t say I read every page; my pregnancy hormones just couldn’t handle the section about the lack of clean water in many parts of the world and what that means for mothers who are feeding infants formula mixed with impure water. What I did read was very compelling. This book explores the origins of infant formulas as well as the social impact that breastfeeding or formula feeding has—economically, medically, and so forth. I think for anyone interested in politics, rights, nutrition, or society in general could find this book quite gripping.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Leanne

    Brilliant & eye opening This book has changed me profoundly, as a mother, a citizen and a consumer. My experiences having my baby & being told 'breast is best' then still feeling pressured to give formula meant I knew something was messed up in the system, but I had no idea of the extent and implications. Anyone who loves or cares for children and the future of our world and societies must read this. It should be definitely be given to every expectant family and trainee midwife! Brilliant & eye opening This book has changed me profoundly, as a mother, a citizen and a consumer. My experiences having my baby & being told 'breast is best' then still feeling pressured to give formula meant I knew something was messed up in the system, but I had no idea of the extent and implications. Anyone who loves or cares for children and the future of our world and societies must read this. It should be definitely be given to every expectant family and trainee midwife!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sabrina

    I had to read this for school, but it was on my reading list before I signed up for my school. This was a shocking read as the author went deep into the history of breastfeeding and the way artificial (formula) feeding. I was enraged at the length of deception the formula companies have went to cover things up or ignore it just for profit. This is a need-to read for health care workers but for everyone.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    I found this quite dense to read - took me a long time to finish it. Interesting material, but nothing world-changing for me.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kristin Dennison

    I'm not sure where to start... This book had me pretty worked up throughout! For differing reasons, though. There are really two aspects to this issue: the politics & economics, and the history/facts. On the history of artificial feeding, the impact of various ad campaigns, and the research about breastfeeding and the risks of not doing so- the author is spot on. As for the political aspects.... The author is so all over the place it's almost amusing. To be clear, she obviously despises capitali I'm not sure where to start... This book had me pretty worked up throughout! For differing reasons, though. There are really two aspects to this issue: the politics & economics, and the history/facts. On the history of artificial feeding, the impact of various ad campaigns, and the research about breastfeeding and the risks of not doing so- the author is spot on. As for the political aspects.... The author is so all over the place it's almost amusing. To be clear, she obviously despises capitalism; or rather, "capitalism" as it exists in the US today, which most economists would agree is a far cry from a truly free economy. The issue is she doesn't seem to really even understand the basics of economic theory- right at the beginning of the book she very blatantly misstated the super basic law of supply & demand. Then at one point she rails against the government's regulation of midwifery- cool, I agree. But then at various other parts rails against those evil economists again. In the last chapter, she actually started down the right path- discussing how the corporations are in bed with the government, how this is anything but a free market, etc. Speaks out against dairy subsidies... Yes, yes, yes! And then..... Her solution seems to be that women who breastfeed ought to be compensated monetarily and of course wealth must be redistributed. Head-desk. She even said industrialization and economic growth has HARMED our standard of living & well being!!!!! Anyway, it's not even a matter of the author having clearly different political values from my own- I assumed as much before I even began reading. It's that she clearly has a very poor understanding of what a truly free market means, or how it would function. I'm not complaining about her criticism of the US economic/political structure as I (an anarcho-capitalist) have my share of complaints as well- it's that she uses the US as a poster child for "free markets" and its failures & shortcomings to "prove" that governments must be heavily involved in order for "justice" to exist (except in the instances where she said their involvement was part of the problems and injustices, of course.... Sigh...). And ultimately she doesn't offer a single, practical or realistic solution. Which is fine if she didn't want to go there, but all the dithering between "free markets suck!" And "government sucks!" Leaves one wondering exactly what she feels the answer is. So, TL;DR: it's a great book- probably more like 4 or 5 stars- in terms of the history of artificial feeding, and the impact on breastfeeding. I could do without the personal political monologues and rants, however, mainly because they were so inaccurate, inconsistent, and oftentimes out of context.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Lindsay

    This book is an important read for everyone, particularly women of childbearing years and all those concerned about the health of women and children. I thought the "gallup through history" section was particularly interesting. Palmer compares the rates of breastfeeding in different ages and finds that they correspond with societal attitudes about the utility of women in general. She points out that in societies where women are more autonomous and "work" is broadly defined, babies and breastfeedi This book is an important read for everyone, particularly women of childbearing years and all those concerned about the health of women and children. I thought the "gallup through history" section was particularly interesting. Palmer compares the rates of breastfeeding in different ages and finds that they correspond with societal attitudes about the utility of women in general. She points out that in societies where women are more autonomous and "work" is broadly defined, babies and breastfeeding flourish. In societies where work is primarily a means hourly or salaried wages, children are out of the realm of normal adult life. Women become dependent on business and patriarchal structures for survival as they become primarily consumers instead of producers. The amount research that went into this book is staggering, and illustrates study after study confirming that breastfeeding is the normal way to nourish children, that normal functions of women's bodies like childbearing and nursing have been largely defined by Western medicine as problems that need intervention, and that many companies will market anything that doesn't outright kill customers - and even then there's some question.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sally

    This book would shock most Americans. We have no idea how detrimental not breastfeeding is to many babies, nor how unethically and aggressively formula companies market to people who can't afford their product, nor the side effects. Most Americans have never heard of the WHO Code, nor do they realize how blatantly it is violated in the US. Here's an analogy: a generation ago, we never would have guessed how crooked the tobacco companies were, in that they knew their product was killing people, y This book would shock most Americans. We have no idea how detrimental not breastfeeding is to many babies, nor how unethically and aggressively formula companies market to people who can't afford their product, nor the side effects. Most Americans have never heard of the WHO Code, nor do they realize how blatantly it is violated in the US. Here's an analogy: a generation ago, we never would have guessed how crooked the tobacco companies were, in that they knew their product was killing people, yet they hid that information and aggressively marketed anyway. The same has come to light about formula companies, but most people are not aware of it yet. Let me clarify and say that formula can be a very important tool for some parents; they are not to blame for using formula. This book is all about big business and politics. The writing isn't that great, and the index stinks, but the information is invaluable.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Everyone should read this book. You will be amazed at the powers of breastfeeding, appalled at the greedy, inhumane actions of formula milk companies and astonished that there is such an established practice of feeding babies with artificial milk while there is a free and amazing food readily available for them. I thought I was pro breastfeeding before I read this book, but I soon realised that I had unwittingly picked up a lot of negative cultural misconceptions. Palmer logically and methodical Everyone should read this book. You will be amazed at the powers of breastfeeding, appalled at the greedy, inhumane actions of formula milk companies and astonished that there is such an established practice of feeding babies with artificial milk while there is a free and amazing food readily available for them. I thought I was pro breastfeeding before I read this book, but I soon realised that I had unwittingly picked up a lot of negative cultural misconceptions. Palmer logically and methodically reveals the health, social, psychological, environmental and economic benefits of breastfeeding while also discussing poverty and oppression of women. Too often I think pro breastfeeding women are afraid to tell other women what they think in case of upsetting someone who was 'unable' to breastfeed. This is understandable but unfortunately formula milk companies have no such scruples about promoting their product.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    Forewarned: the writing was definitely dull and slow to get through at times. That said, the information printed in this book astounded me. The formula companies shameless marking and violation of WHO codes they've agreed to abide by is not only reprehensible, it's dangerous and life-threatening to mothers and babies, and ends up causing babies to die. It's also shameless how governments are in the back pockets of the formula companies. I was also astounded to read how much healthcare dollars wo Forewarned: the writing was definitely dull and slow to get through at times. That said, the information printed in this book astounded me. The formula companies shameless marking and violation of WHO codes they've agreed to abide by is not only reprehensible, it's dangerous and life-threatening to mothers and babies, and ends up causing babies to die. It's also shameless how governments are in the back pockets of the formula companies. I was also astounded to read how much healthcare dollars would be saved if more women were encouraged to and supported to breastfeed their babies. It's all well and good that we all hear that "Breast is Best," but unfortunately, too many do not get the support needed to succeed. This is book is eye-opening, not just for moms and moms-to-be, but dads, friends, grandparents, etc.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Mind blowing read for me. As a long term exclusive breastfeeder reading this has really solidified exactly why my maternal instinct told me to avoid artificial milk. It's a MUST read for everyone who is deeper than a puddle. This book helped me understand more just how far certain agencies will go to bring down mothers, womanhood, the powerful force of women and what our bodies can really do. In very basic terms they lie to you, so you doubt yourself and then you'd buy what ever rubbish they are Mind blowing read for me. As a long term exclusive breastfeeder reading this has really solidified exactly why my maternal instinct told me to avoid artificial milk. It's a MUST read for everyone who is deeper than a puddle. This book helped me understand more just how far certain agencies will go to bring down mothers, womanhood, the powerful force of women and what our bodies can really do. In very basic terms they lie to you, so you doubt yourself and then you'd buy what ever rubbish they are peddling. Sadly it is to our detriment. Again it goes back to making yojrelf as knowledgable as possible because ignorance is evil.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Sara

    Every mother should read this book, especially new mothers. It is a non-fiction book, yet I could not put it down. The only downside to the book is that it was written in the 80's, when breastfeeding was just starting to make its comeback. Nowadays women are breastfeeding their little hearts out, but in the 80's there didn't seem to be a whole lot of hope left, so the author's stance takes a negative light throughout the entire book. Aside from that, I found this to be an incredibly inspiring re Every mother should read this book, especially new mothers. It is a non-fiction book, yet I could not put it down. The only downside to the book is that it was written in the 80's, when breastfeeding was just starting to make its comeback. Nowadays women are breastfeeding their little hearts out, but in the 80's there didn't seem to be a whole lot of hope left, so the author's stance takes a negative light throughout the entire book. Aside from that, I found this to be an incredibly inspiring read.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Sara

    Every mother should read this book, especially new mothers. It is a non-fiction book, yet I could not put it down. The only downside to the book is that it was written in the 80's, when breastfeeding was just starting to make its comeback. Nowadays women are breastfeeding their little hearts out, but in the 80's there didn't seem to be a whole lot of hope left, so the author's stance takes a negative light throughout the entire book. Aside from that, I found this to be an incredibly inspiring re Every mother should read this book, especially new mothers. It is a non-fiction book, yet I could not put it down. The only downside to the book is that it was written in the 80's, when breastfeeding was just starting to make its comeback. Nowadays women are breastfeeding their little hearts out, but in the 80's there didn't seem to be a whole lot of hope left, so the author's stance takes a negative light throughout the entire book. Aside from that, I found this to be an incredibly inspiring read.

  29. 5 out of 5

    missy jean

    Everybody should read this book--especially women, and especially mothers or women who want to be mothers--but really, everyone should. I read it for the first time in Valerie Hudson's class at BYU, and I've gone back to it many times. The information in this book forms the basis for my passion about breastfeeding--an issue that is both personal AND intensely political. This is a truly IMPORTANT book. Everybody should read this book--especially women, and especially mothers or women who want to be mothers--but really, everyone should. I read it for the first time in Valerie Hudson's class at BYU, and I've gone back to it many times. The information in this book forms the basis for my passion about breastfeeding--an issue that is both personal AND intensely political. This is a truly IMPORTANT book.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    I read this book because a review stated that almost every sentence was quotable. Never were truer words spoken. This is a history of how women have become separated from their bodies natural functions as well as their inherent abilities to provide what's best for their children. What's come in between? Industry, corporations, marketing, war, natural disasters, misogyny, etc., etc. Everything that could go wrong, has. I read this book because a review stated that almost every sentence was quotable. Never were truer words spoken. This is a history of how women have become separated from their bodies natural functions as well as their inherent abilities to provide what's best for their children. What's come in between? Industry, corporations, marketing, war, natural disasters, misogyny, etc., etc. Everything that could go wrong, has.

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