Health Issue: The overall state of reproductive health of the young women in Argentina due to teen pregnancies
Anthropological perspective: Feminist Theory
After carefully reviewing the Exploration on Medical Anthropology by Donald Joralemon in our week one assignments I have selected Feminist Theory from one of the five anthropological perspectives to discuss (Joralemon, 1997).My health issue for my chosen country, Argentina, is the overall state of reproductive health of the young women due to teen pregnancies. Feminist Theory may seem like an odd choice when only women can get pregnant in comparison to men, but it’s much more relevant than believed.
The lecture poses some interesting questions that had me questioning, so how does gender impact the situation? The reason that women do not get more assistance with their reproductive health needs isn’t because they are not men but because men do not need that specific health focus. So according to the feminist theory you must question if people are behaving in a gendered way in a given situation (Gabriel, 2018). The answer is correct. Not only do teen mothers have a difficult struggle but they are also ridiculed and shamed for her behavior but the teen father is not.
The lecture on female perspectives asks specifically, is someone being treated in a way that creates economic, political, or other social inequalities? There are many different determinants of teenage pregnancy such as monthly income of the family, the age group of the parents, marital status, and whether or not the mother was communicating with parents about reproductive health issues (Ayele B.G. et al. 2018). Women of low education and socio-economic status are most commonly impacted by this issue, due to the lack of access to information on the subject and ability to receive contraceptives. Not only do teen pregnancies occur due to a lack of education and contraceptives, but they also create more problems once a teen becomes pregnant. These women are very vulnerable to violence and further social inequalities.
Is there inequality present due to specifically to gender? Absolutely. Overall women have significantly worse outcomes in reproductive health than men and posing the argument that it’s because they give birth and that includes more complications is the definition of a sexist claim. According to the feminist theory you cannot discriminate against a gender regardless of the medical concerns attached to that specific gender (Dominguez, 2009). This health issue contributes to young mothers having to leave school due to the pregnancy and take off work. This is dominantly affecting the FEMALE gender. Once the baby is born, it is not uncommon for the mother to not return from school or work because of the overwhelming duties as a mother, often due to lack of assistance. This leads to the family becoming more and more economically unstable, creating an unhealthy environment for the family overall.
Overall the theoretical perspective of feminist theory is the treatment toward men and women. It is not uncommon for this to be a difficult problem in the developing world however a heavy concern lays on the women within these developing countries and the lack of assistance they have because of their gender. I think that throughout this project it will be clearer and clearer the burden these women carry when becoming pregnant and show the overwhelming assistance the men receive in comparison.
Gabriel, C. Lecture 1.6: Introducing Theory 5: Feminist Theory, 2018, D2L.http://anthropology.msu.edu/anp270-us18/lecture-videos/feminist-theory/
Dominguez, Johnna, et al. “The University of Alabama.” Department of Anthropology, 2009, https://anthropology.ua.edu/cultures/cultures.php?culture=Feminist%20Anthropology
Joralemon, Donald. “Recognizing Biological, Social, and Cultural Interconnections.” MSU Anthropology , 1997, http://anthropology.msu.edu/anp270-us18/files/2015/05/1.1-Joralemon.pdf