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Autobiographies

  • By: Marcella Bush Trevino
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

Autobiographies, in which a person recounts their life history, have long been a popular literary genre. Autobiographies have increased in diversity and in volume during the 20th century, especially those written by women. Their style and subjects have also changed over time. Mothers have written autobiographies for a variety of reasons. Common motives include the demonstration of the impact of special circumstances on motherhood, the exploration of their personal relationship to cultural expectations of motherhood, the offering of advice or comfort to other mothers, or simply to share and validate their motherhood experiences. Childhood and coming-of-age autobiographies are another rich resource related to motherhood, as many adult autobiographers recall the formative impact of their childhood experiences. Autobiographies provide both scholars and general readers with important ...

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