Kerri Barnes

Document Type


Date of Award



School of Communication (SOC)

Degree Name

MA in Communication

Committee Chairperson

Morgan Kirby

Committee Member 1

Tyrone Dixon

Committee Member 2

Vera Hawkin-Walker

Committee Member 3

Alexis Brooks De Vita


Breastfeeding, feminist theory, Twitter


The study uses the feminist theory to discourse issues surrounding breastfeeding as articulated on Twitter. The research employed a mixed methodology approach in executing its goal. The study will begin by examining and presenting findings on a Twitter hashtag, #breastfeeding, a popular hashtag that mothers and experts use to articulate breastfeeding issues. The extensive examination of breastfeeding beyond its linguistic form was undertaken in this study based on the feminist guidelines considering bodies that protect mothers' welfare were integrated into the study. The study findings from the tweets analyzed, N= 2,818, indicate and confirm that breastfeeding is the mode of child feeding that is considered most basic and primary. In contrast, bottle feeding is gauged to be second and more of a complementary method. The sexualization perception of the breast versus its natural conceptualization was also examined and integrated into analyzing breastfeeding as a discourse. The other extremism of conceptualizing breastfeeding as a provocative act on one end and as a mothering procedure thus natural was also part of the issues examined and reported.The placement and positioning of products that support breastfeeding, the value of breastfeeding as a way of offering protection to either or both the mother and the child, the insurance issues on breastfeeding were also integrated. From the analysis, however, what is apparent is that breasting discussions and networks were driven more by private agencies and health offering organizations more than it is spearheaded by organizations and agencies initiated by the governments for public support.