Breastfeeding and Media

Exploring Conflicting Discourses That Threaten Public Health

  • Katherine A. Foss

About this book


This book centers on the role of media in shaping public perceptions of breastfeeding. Drawing from magazines, doctors’ office materials, parenting books, television, websites, and other media outlets, Katherine A. Foss explores how historical and contemporary media often undermine breastfeeding efforts with formula marketing and narrow portrayals of nursing women and their experiences. Foss argues that the media’s messages play an integral role in setting the standard of public knowledge and attitudes toward breastfeeding, as she traces shifting public perceptions of breastfeeding and their corresponding media constructions from the development of commercial formula through contemporary times. This analysis demonstrates how attributions of blame have negatively impacted public health approaches to breastfeeding, thus confronting the misperception that breastfeeding, and the failure to breastfeed, rests solely on the responsibility of an individual mother.


Breastfeeding and Media Breastfeeding and Public Health Breastfeeding Controversies Health and Media Health Communication Women in the Media

Authors and affiliations

  • Katherine A. Foss
    • 1
  1. 1.School of JournalismMiddle Tennessee State UniversityMurfreesboroUSA

Bibliographic information