Refereed journal article or data article (A1)

Bad is the new good: negotiating bad motherhood in Finnish mommy blogs

List of Authors: Lehto Mari

Publisher: Taylor & Francis Online

Publication year: 2019

Journal: Feminist Media Studies

Volume number: 20

Issue number: 5

eISSN: 1468-0777




In recent years, there has been a growing number of mommy blogs and other social media sites where mothers air their negative feelings about motherhood. Analysing four posts of two Finnish mommy blogs and their comments, the article explores the affective power of a “bad mom” figure in relation to the contemporary experience of parenting in Finnish settings; settings which have become increasingly child-centred. The article investigates how these popular blogs mobilise their readers through self-reflective yet ambivalent confessions and ironic criticisms of normative motherhood. The article argues that while the emotional work of the bloggers might not be able to dismantle the myth of the perfect mother, the figure of a bad mom can be seen as an attempt to make sense of the frictions and contradictions triggered by the exhausting nature of the gendered, intensive parenting culture. It further argues that in this process the figure of the bad mom transforms into a new “normal” while the notion of motherhood remains both affective and polarised.

Last updated on 2021-24-06 at 09:48