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ERIC Number: ED432718
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1998-Aug
Pages: 30
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Moving Beyond Dualistic Models: Working Single Mothers and Stress.
May-Stewart, Valerie D.
This action research study examines the stressors that impact the lives of working mothers (N=11). Ethnographic field notes, personal interviews, and a series of eight weekly group meetings were used to collect data. The prevailing stress discourse does not adequately describe working single mothers' experiences of stress, but instead separates women's identities into dichotomies (i.e., work and family). The new conceptual framework for stress that guided the design of this study moved beyond dualistic models that isolate the working mothers' experiences toward a more complex analysis, learning about the cospecification of both work- and nonwork-related stressors. This analysis consisted of contextualizing the women's lives in relation to Newton's (1995) five themes: history, gender issues, collective experience, emotions, and politics, as well as other interlocking variables such as age, race, class, and sexuality. Results indicate that dualistic models fail to describe the multiple realities in working single mothers' lives, and that the dominant stress discourse, which is individualistic, apolitical, and ahistoric, does not fully capture these women's experiences. A new conceptual framework that challenges the dominant stress discourse is presented. (Contains 28 references.) (Author/MKA)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Canada