Struggling Integrity: Media and Middle-class Moms

The Influence of Mass Media on Parenting Style

Media and Middle Class Moms: Images and Realities of Work and Family” by Lara J. Descartes and Conrad Kottak raises questions about the extent to which parents, as well as their parenting style, are affected by the media. Peer pressure is often as powerful a force in the adult world as it is in the world of children and adolescents. In a world in which mass media... Read More

Parents: Above the Law

“There is ample empirical evidence that a lack of love can harm a child’s psychological, cognitive, social, and physical development. Given this, parents are obligated to seek to foster the development of the capacities for engaging in close and loving personal relationships in their children.”

Michael W. Austin

Laws To Enforce Parental Duties

In loco parentis is... Read More

Motherhood as a Status Characteristic and the Maternal Economic Penalty

The motherhood penalty is a phrase coined by sociologists to describe the economic costs for women who become mothers. Research shows that the economic maternal penalty amounts to a 5% decrease in wages per child. Professional women who are mothers make an average of $11,000 per year less than women who do not have children. Men’s wages, in contrast either remain the same or increase when they become fathers. Despite the... Read More

Sacred Insanity: The Love Drugs

“That’s what falling in love really amounted to, your brain on drugs. Adrenaline and dopamine, oxytocin and serotonin. Chemical insanity, celebrated by poets.”

Tess Gerritsen

The Role of Loving Female Hormones in Sexuality

There are a number of substances produced by women’s bodies that might be called loving female hormones. Two of the most important are oxytocin and dopamine. Oxytocin was “discovered” in... Read More

Hommage to the Equality Principles of the Iroquois Nation

Family Life With Iroquois Nation

It’s quite possible that family life in the Iroquois Nation may have had a lasting influence on the quality of women’s lives all over the world. Iroquois society reflected the basic tenet that life has no real quality without equality. In their society, women enjoyed far more freedom and many more human rights than the women of early American society.

American suffragettes Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Matilda Joslyn Gage, and Lucretia... Read More

About the Mothering Heart and Sexual Invisibility

“You can be a businesswoman, a mother, an artist, and a feminist — whatever you want to be — and still be a sexual being. It’s not mutually exclusive.”


An article about motherhood and sexuality in literature and film questions whether sexuality and family life are compatible in Western societies. The author’s analyzation of... Read More

Surrogacy: Humanity’s Capacity for the Ultimate Gift

“The Vatican is against surrogate mothers. Good thing they didn’t have that rule when Jesus was born.”

–Elayne Boosler

Forms of Surrogacy

Couples who are unable to have a child due to any number of medical conditions are increasingly utilizing the services of surrogates. Surrogacy involves one woman carrying the biological child of a couple to term. The two common processes of surrogacy are the traditional and the... Read More

On Father’s Day and Holiday’s Sentimental Attempts to Domesticate Manliness

Special Day Honoring Fatherhood

Father’s Day celebrated its 100th Anniversary in the U.S. in 2010. In 1909, Sonora Smart-Dodd of Spokane, Washington, being one of six children being raised by a single father, wanted to honor him. She suggested to her local churches that June 5th, her father’s birthday, be a day in which parishioners honored fatherhood. The pastors... Read More

Matrifocality and Women’s Power: The Peril of Fixed Opinions

“Obviously, you would give your life for your children, or give them the last biscuit on the plate. But to me, the trick in life is to take that sense of generosity between kin, make it apply to the extended family and to your neighbor, your village, and beyond.”

–Tom Stoppard

Meaning of Matrifocal Family Life

“Matrifocal” is a term first coined in 1956. In matrifocal family life, the woman and children are the... Read More