Queer and expecting: Lesbian, bisexual, and transgender women in the childbearing literature
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This study determined if, with what frequency, and how lesbian, bisexual, and transgender women are represented in the medical and nursing literature on childbearing. I used feminist content analysis methods to examine 26 articles, located through CINAHL and MEDLINE searches, and 9 textbooks, selected for their common use in obstetrics and midwifery. Both the articles and textbooks were analyzed for lesbian, bisexual, and transgender content, assessing whether this content was inclusive, exclusive, or absent, and if it presented the population as pathological, normal with deviance, minority, or exemplar. I found that queer women, in small numbers, are present in the childbearing literature; that CINAHL and midwifery textbooks contained the greatest queer content; that the articles tended to focus exclusively on the population while the textbooks included the population in the body of the material, and that the majority of articles in both of the databases and in the textbooks presented the population as a minority. These findings support the need for further research on queer women and childbearing, especially in the areas of race/ethnicity, age, class, and (dis)ability. Further studies which inclusively and exclusively examine this population are warranted and this work should continue to address heterosexism and homophobia in conventional research and education.