The Motherhood Penalty : A Review Of Literature

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The motherhood penalty: A review of literature For over 150 years, women have been fighting back against patriarchy for the rights to our own bodies, careers and lives in general. The women’s movement has a accomplished great strides for humankind; however, women remain bound and suffocated by constructions patriarchy in both the private and public spheres. For many women, private and public spheres intersect and create a tension constructed by society that suggests that women must choose between family or career.
Whichever choice a woman makes, she will likely be scrutinized, criticized and objectified for her decision. If a woman chooses to pursue her career, she risks being labeled as frigid and selfish. If a woman becomes a mother, she must devote her entire existence to raising her children, which existing literature refers to as ‘mothering,’ a verb, something that is done. Women in politics frequently experience this phenomenon commonly known as the motherhood trap, which can affect many different perspectives and identities. The motherhood trap will be explored in depth in the following review of literature.
The motherhood trap unveils the deep, dark secrets of capitalism, in the way it relies so heavily on unpaid labor, often from women, in order to sustain itself. Women provide this unpaid labor at the cost of careers, and overall earning power. For example, if a woman exits the workforce for maternity leave, her wages will never bounce back from this
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