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Using multiple qualitative methods to understand barriers to public breastf...

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Room 714/15, 7th Floor Muirhead Tower, University of Birmingham

Edgbaston

Birmingham

B15 2TT

United Kingdom

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External Seminar Series in the Department of Social Work and Social Care

“You feel quite dirty…it’s kinda like you’re just stood there pole dancing”: Using multiple qualitative methods to understand barriers to public breastfeeding – Dr Aimee Grant, Cardiff University

We are delighted to invite you to the second of a new External Seminar Series. The Seminars are an opportunity for practitioners, students, members of the public, and academic staff to come together to listen to a speaker and engage in discussion around a particular area of practice. These quarterly Seminars will be held from 4-6pm and refreshments will be served.

The Seminar is on Wednesday 9th May from 4-6pm in Room 714/15, 7th Floor of the Muirhead Tower.

At this Seminar, Dr Aimee Grant will discuss findings from a portfolio of research she has been undertaking since 2013 on infant feeding in public space. Within England and Wales, the Equality Act 2010 provides legal protection to mothers breastfeeding in public spaces. Despite this there are regular stories in the media of women being asked to leave businesses because they are feeding their baby.

Aimee and her team have undertaken interviews with 28 mothers and 6 grandmothers using a variety of creative and visual methods. Alongside this, Aimee has used documentary analysis of online comments relating to infant feeding, and she is currently finalising a qualitative systematic review of the experiences of mothers and observers in relation to infant feeding in public. The focus of this group of studies, which has become narrower over time, is to consider how society should be changed in order to make it easier for women to breastfeed outside of the home.

Aimee’s talk will explore two main areas. First, the lived experience of mothers who report a range of surveillance and stigma in relation to infant feeding in public spaces. Second, the views of those who observe, or imagine themselves observing, a stranger breastfeeding outside of the home. This second area is particularly under researched. Drawing on verbatim quotes, and extracts from visual productions, Aimee will argue that the Equality Act 2010 is poorly understood in the public at large, and offers little protection to the majority of women who are quietly trying to feed their babies. Drawing on a qualitative systematic review of 38 papers from high income countries, it will be shown that this is not just a British phenomenon, and internationally change in public opinion is essential if we are to stop stigmatising mothers.

About the Speaker

Aimee Grant is an ISSF Wellcome Trust Fellow at Cardiff University’s Centre for Trials Research. Her fellowship involves further exploration of the barriers and facilitators to breastfeeding in public spaces in south Wales, using urban ethnography and walking interviews. Aimee’s interests are: qualitative methods, stigma, pregnancy and motherhood. Her sole authored methodology text ‘Doing EXCELLENT social research with documents: practical examples and guidance for qualitative researchers’ will be published by Routledge in 2018.

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Room 714/15, 7th Floor Muirhead Tower, University of Birmingham

Edgbaston

Birmingham

B15 2TT

United Kingdom

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