Representations of Teen Pregnancy and Motherhood in the United States

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Representations of Teen Pregnancy and Motherhood in the United States

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Publication 1-year master student thesis
Title Representations of Teen Pregnancy and Motherhood in the United States
Author(s) Daldin, Jacqueline
Date 2015
English abstract
The teen pregnancy rate in the United States has been rapidly and steadily declining across all ethnic groups and races over the past two decades and is now at an all-time low. Most academic studies attribute this decline to increased and consistent use of contraception. Despite this good news, instead of or in addition to focusing on evidence-based advocacy in their prevention efforts, many social institutions, including public health entities and private sector organizations, continue to use representations of teen pregnancy and motherhood that stigmatize young mothers – or construct narratives of failure – as part of their communication interventions. The advent of social media, however, has given young mothers the means to challenge these mainstream representations and create positive social identities – or construct narratives of success. My research focuses on how images used in prevention campaigns construct or resist representations of teen pregnancy. My methodological framework consists of a combination of textual analysis and qualitative interviews with the image-producers. Theories related to language as an important tool for constructing and resisting representations, communication for social change as a rights-based framework and social media as a site to build identity and interject voice in public discourse are also explored and should be of interest to communication for development practitioners.
Publisher Malmö högskola/Kultur och samhälle
Pages 86
Language eng (iso)
Subject(s) Representation
Teen Pregnancy
Human Rights
Participatory Communication
Social Media
The United States
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