Article: Adaptation to the New Normal—Maternal Employment in the Framework of Psychosomatic and Stress Discourse in Finland from the 1950s to the Early 1970s, by Mikko Myllykangas and Eve-Riina Hyrkäs

The article “Adaptation to the New Normal—Maternal Employment in the Framework of Psychosomatic and Stress Discourse in Finland from the 1950s to the Early 1970s” written by Mikko Myllykangas and Eve-Riina Hyrkäs, might be of interest to h-madness readers.

The abstract reads:

“This article examines how the psychosomatic approach, a holistic orientation towards health and illness, and the concept of ‘stress’ were employed in the Finnish socio-medical discussion on maternal employment during the post-war decades. The concepts of psychosomatics and stress voiced the contemporary anxieties about a changing way of life, and as the psychosocial environment was connected to morbidity, maternal employment could be seen as a medical problem. The changing value climate of the late 1960s elicited an emerging discrepancy between interpretations of medical theories and ‘modern values’, articulated in maternal employment and day care discussions. ‘Psychosomatics’ and ‘stress’ could be used as tools for victim-blaming, but also to call for changes in social conditions. The article contributes to the historical scholarship on social change by suggesting how the interaction between individual behaviour and the planning of social policies can be analysed”.

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