Locating Lesbian Parent Families

  • Jacqui Gabb


Studies of changing family and kinship relations have demonstrated that no singular understanding of family exists: families are what families do.1 It is claimed that “transformations of intimacy” have restructured adult-sexual2 and parent-child relationships,3 without obligation, around “elective love.”4 Research on lesbian and gay parent families highlights the importance of a “friendship ethic”5 where friends and partners are incorporated into fluid family forms.6 These “families of choice” are developing egalitarian parental relationships based on gender “sameness.”7 Paradoxically, while research on lesbian and gay parent families adds to our understanding of emerging patterns of queer kinship,8 and the ways that lesbian mothers negotiate the daily practices of mothering,9 little attention has been paid to the consequences of parenthood on mothers’ lesbianism. There has been some research into how lesbian mothers manage their parental and sexual identities,10 but how these identities and practices of self are materialized remains under-researched. In this chapter I demonstrate that by analyzing lesbian parent families through spatial structure it is possible to see the ways that lesbian parent families (re) present and experience themselves and how mothers manage their sexual-maternal identities.


Sexual Identity Parent Family Queer Theory Lesbian Mother Horne Function 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Sarah Hardy and Caroline Wiedmer 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jacqui Gabb

There are no affiliations available

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