Precious, pure, uncivilised, vulnerable: infant embodiment in Australian popular media

Deborah Lupton

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    22 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This article describes how infants' bodies were portrayed in a range of Australian popular media texts. Four main discourses on infant embodiment were identified: the infant as ‘precious’, ‘pure’, ‘uncivilised’ and ‘vulnerable’. While, on the one hand, infants were positioned as the most valuable and affectively appealing of humans, they were alternatively represented as uncivilised. Infant bodies were portrayed as appropriately inhabiting the domestic sphere of the home and as barely tolerated or even as excluded in the public sphere. The discussion looks at how concepts of ‘nature’, civility and Self and Otherness underpinned the identified discourses.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)341-351
    Number of pages11
    JournalChildren & Society
    Volume28
    Issue number5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Sept 2014

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