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Calm Vessels: Cultural Expectations of Pregnant Women in Qatar

Kilshaw, S; Miller, D; Al Tamimi, H; El-Taher, F; Mohsen, M; Omar, N; Major, S; (2016) Calm Vessels: Cultural Expectations of Pregnant Women in Qatar. Anthropology of the Middle East , 11 (2) pp. 39-59. 10.3167/ame.2016.110204. Green open access

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Abstract

This article explores emerging themes from the first stage of ethnographic research investigating pregnancy and loss in Qatar. Issues around the development of foetal personhood, the medical management of the pregnant body and the social role of the pregnant woman are explored. Findings suggest that Qatari women are expected to be calm vessels for their growing baby and should avoid certain foods and behaviours. These ideas of risk avoidance are linked to indigenous knowledge around a mother’s influence on a child’s health and traits. Motherhood holds a particularly important place in Qatari culture and in Islam, and women are ultimately responsible for protecting and promoting fertility and for producing healthy children.

Type: Article
Title: Calm Vessels: Cultural Expectations of Pregnant Women in Qatar
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3167/ame.2016.110204
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.3167/ame.2016.110204
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © Berghahn Books. All rights reserved.
Keywords: Miscarriage, pregnancy, Qatar, risk, women’s health
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1547551
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