Making Care Work: Employed Mothers in the New Childcare Market

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9780813531113: Making Care Work: Employed Mothers in the New Childcare Market
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As ever more women work outside the home, ever more families employ childcare workers. In the absence of government regulations or social models that clearly define the childcare provider’s role, mothers worry about the quality of care their children are getting. By connecting the personal level of mothers’ daily experiences to the larger political, economic, and ideological context of childcare, Lynet Uttal describes and explains how mothers rely on their relationship with the providers to monitor and influence the quality of care their children receive. Whereas other studies have emphasized how mothers undervalue and exploit providers, this book paints a more nuanced picture, arguing that the ties between adults who share in the care of children creates neither heroes nor victims. This ethnography reveals that mothers are often reluctant to discuss their concerns with their childcare providers. Uttal shows how mothers walk a fine line between wanting to believe in the quality of care they have chosen, and the fact that they might have made a mistake. Catalyzed by their worries about the quality of care, mothers develop complex relationships with the women—and most are women—who look after their children.

 

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With more women working outside the home than ever before, more families are employing childcare workers. In the absence of government regulations or social models that clearly define the childcare provider's role, mothers rely on their relationship with providers to monitor and influence the quality of care their children receive. Whereas other studies have emphasized how mothers undervalue providers in market-based systems of child care, this ethnography paints a more nuanced picture connecting the personal level of mothers' daily experience to the larger political, economic, and ideological context of child care as both paid labor and as intimate care work. Lynet Uttal shows how mothers walk a tightrope, wanting to believe in the quality of care they have chosen, yet afraid that they have made a mistake. Galvanized by their worries about the quality of care, mothers respond to issues and problems through the relationship they develop with the women-and most are women-whom they pay to care for their children.

About the Author:

LYNET UTTAL is an associate professor of human development and family studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

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Book Description Rutgers University Press, United States, 2002. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. As ever more women work outside the home, ever more families employ childcare workers. In the absence of government regulations or social models that clearly define the childcare provider s role, mothers worry about the quality of care their children are getting. By connecting the personal level of mothers daily experiences to the larger political, economic, and ideological context of childcare, Lynet Uttal describes and explains how mothers rely on their relationship with the providers to monitor and influence the quality of care their children receive. Whereas other studies have emphasized how mothers undervalue and exploit providers, this book paints a more nuanced picture, arguing that the ties between adults who share in the care of children creates neither heroes nor victims. This ethnography reveals that mothers are often reluctant to discuss their concerns with their childcare providers. Uttal shows how mothers walk a fine line between wanting to believe in the quality of care they have chosen, and the fact that they might have made a mistake. Catalyzed by their worries about the quality of care, mothers develop complex relationships with the women--and most are women--who look after their children. Seller Inventory # AAC9780813531113

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