Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To access to IJP Open with a PEP-Web subscription…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Having a PEP-Web subscription grants you access to IJP Open. This new feature allows you to access and review some articles of the International Journal of Psychoanalysis before their publication. The free subscription to IJP Open is required, and you can access it by clicking here.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Stone, R. (2015). Can the Breast Feed the Mother Too? Tracing Maternal Subjectivity in Toni Morrison's Beloved. Brit. J. Psychother., 31(3):298-310.

(2015). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 31(3):298-310

Rozsika Parker Prize 2014

Can the Breast Feed the Mother Too? Tracing Maternal Subjectivity in Toni Morrison's Beloved

Rebecca Stone

Breastfeeding tends to elicit strong feelings in mothers as well as impassioned rhetoric in our cultural discourse. Psychoanalytic thinkers have focused extensively on the infant's experience at the breast. Surprisingly, much less theoretical attention has been given to the mother's experience of breastfeeding. I begin with my own experience of struggling with this early stage of motherhood and with understanding why this act seemed to hold such emotional power. By tracing the theme of breastfeeding in Toni Morrison's Beloved, I attempt to draw out ideas about the breastfeeding mother as a subject rather than an object. I argue that the novel's depiction of breastfeeding supports understanding the maternal body as a source of ambivalence and creativity for the mother as well as for the infant. Drawing mainly on the work of Melanie Klein, Donald Winnicott and Julia Kristeva, I explore through literary readings how breastfeeding comes to stir up such passionate and often difficult feelings for mothers.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

Copyright © 2019, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.