My Your Guide to Breastfeeding for African American Women shipment just showed up today – and I completely forgot I placed the order until UPS dropped them at my door. They are 47 pages long each, and have information geared towards Black mothers on why it’s important to breastfeed, ways to gauge how much milk your baby is receiving, how many diapers your baby should be using per day, nutrition for both mom and baby, along with many other topics. They are also available in Chinese, and Spanish as well as for American Indian and Alaska Native Families. I also ordered a few of the white women’s issue – the ‘race-less’ one – meaning even though it doesn’t explicitly state ‘For White Women,’ there’s a white baby on the cover and the text is centered around white culture. Looking at how this issue is positioned on the website – it’s the largest image and is positioned at the top of all of the others, I’m guessing this is assumed to be the ‘overarching’ and ‘dominant’ one – that’s meant for everyone – even in the absence of any other specific ‘ethnic’ title.
I have to say that although I’m happy to come across these, everything in me wants to tear into each like you wouldn’t believe to see if they actually highlight the different cultural aspects of infant feeding and race politics, or have they been made to mimic a dominant structure and that particular view on breastfeeding. I’ll be exploring that.
If you’d like copies, you are allowed up to 25 of each per month for free by ordering online or calling the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health at their number: 800-994-9662 (TDD: 888-220-5446). If you visit their website you can print as many as you’d like.