In the Age of Mechanical Reproduction Statement
This series explores the medical technologies that assist women with breastfeeding. The plastic pumps, shields, tubes, and other devices commonly used by women underscore how technology augments and disrupts our sense of what bodies do "naturally." Cultural demands to succeed effortlessly and heroically at giving birth and nursing are generally hard to fulfill. Moreover, debates about where, how, and for how long women should breastfeed their children have become increasingly tense, yet frank images of the mechanics of nursing are rare. One exciting result of this project was the opportunity to hear new parents voice their frustrations, disappointments, and victories surrounding pregnancy, childbirth, and childcare. It also allowed them to reveal realistic images of the strangeness of motherhood as it is lived for many in contemporary America. I talk more about the project in an interview here.