Real (M)othering: The Metaphysics of Maternity in Children's Literature.

In Sally Haslanger & Charlotte Witt (eds.), Real (M)othering: The Metaphysics of Maternity in Children's Literature. In Sally Haslanger and Charlotte Witt, eds. Adoption Matters: Philosophical and Feminist Essays. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. 171-194. Cornell University Press. pp. 171-194 (2005)
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Abstract

This paper examines the complexity and fluidity of maternal identity through an examination of narratives about "real motherhood" found in children's literature. Focusing on the multiplicity of mothers in adoption, I question standard views of maternity in which gestational, genetic and social mothering all coincide in a single person. The shortcomings of traditional notions of motherhood are overcome by developing a fluid and inclusive conception of maternal reality as authored by a child's own perceptions

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Shelley M. Park
University of Central Florida

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