Thursday, July 8, 2010

Breastfeeding: International and Religious Perspectives

Beautiful breastfeeding art by Kate Hansen
Welcome to day 4 of the Carnival of Nursing in Public. Think nursing in public is only a concern in the United States? If so, is it our religious roots that has instilled our country's prudish (and misguided) desire for "discretion"? Today's writers have written about breastfeeding from both a religious and an international viewpoint. What are your thoughts?

Please visit our featured post today from Barbara, our Italian partner in the Carnival of N.I.P. She has written a wonderful post on Italian attitudes toward breastfeeding - both today and historically.

Religious Perspectives

  • Ever wonder why Christians are blamed (in part) for the prudishness that has so sexualized the female breast? Lauren at Hobo Mama has written a thought-provoking piece on the history of the Christian church.
  • Jewish women have inherited a beautiful legacy of breastfeeding. Sara at The Covered Wagon explains why Jewish mothers need not cover up to comport with the religious laws of modesty.
  • It is our culture's message, not the Bible's, that breasts are singularly sexual. Megan at SortaCrunchy shares her perspective on breastfeeding from a Christian point of view.
  • Hannah at A Mother in Israel explains that, for Orthodox Jews, feeding a baby trumps any notions of modesty.
  • The Catholic Church has a centuries long history of celebrating and supporting breastfeeding. You know what they say - it's the way Mary fed Jesus! Kimberly at Fertility Flower shares her thoughts on the Catholic perspective.

International Perspectives

  • Annie from PhD in Parenting is spending several months in Germany this year. She has gathered some information on German attitudes toward N.I.P., and a humorous story about artificial milk written over 100 years ago.
  • Alison at Bluebird Mama has always had positive experiences nursing in her home country of Canada. She is thankful that her babies' right to breastfeed is protected by law.
  • Even in 'stiff upper lip' England, Luschka at Diary of a First Child has never had a negative comment when she N.I.P.
  • An Irish La Leche League chapter's monthly meet and greet chat gives new breastfeeding mothers confidence to nurse in public. Lilbitz at Do I Dare Eat a Peach? shares her experiences.
  • In this guest post at Lactivist Leanings, a breastfeeding mama explains how nurturing her child at the breast has helped her cross cultural divides all around the world.
  • Berta at VirtualBerta is a quiet inspiration to every breastfeeding mama she passes while she lives in Taiwan.


One more for you: I've shared my thoughts on Nursing in the Mother's Room at an LDS church (arguably one of the most conservative of the Christian sects) and on Thursday there will be an overview of the doctrine of Modesty and nursing:

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