Valuing Motherhood Across Cultures

Identities such as race, gender, and age are ascribed statuses; that is they are statuses that are assigned at birth and are involuntarily assumed throughout one’s life.  On the other hand, many of the identities we hold are based on achieved statuses—positions that we earn and/or choose.  One such identity is motherhood. From a sociological perspective, the identity of motherhood is more complex than once thought. The societal value and status of motherhood has varied greatly over time and, even today, varies across countries.

For this discussion, you will examine how the achieved identity of motherhood is valued in the United States and abroad. To begin, review this Washington Post article (Links to an external site.)  https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/she-the-people/wp/2014/06/23/global-view-how-u-s-policies-to-help-working-families-rank-in-the-world/ that provides statistics on how the United States compares to other countries in terms of family-friendly policies, as well as this BBC article (Links to an external site.) https://www.bbc.com/news/magazine-22751415 that looks at one way the government in Finland welcomes new babies into society.

Next, using these resources as evidence to back up your ideas, address the following:

  • Describe how the United States compares to other countries on at least three different family-friendly policies. 
  • What message does the Finnish ‘baby box’ send about the value of motherhood in that society?  How does this compare to the cultural messages about the value of motherhood in the U.S.? 
  • In what way do family-friendly government policies reinforce these cultural messages?

Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length. Support your claims with examples from the required material(s) and/or scholarly resources, and properly cite any references both in text (Links to an external site.) and in a references list (Links to an external site.) at the end of the post. 

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