"If we can prevent children from dying unnecessarily, I don't see a downside": An analysis of Vaccinations, Children, Parenting and Vulnerability in Parents and Today’s Parent articles about Childhood Vaccinations
Since the beginning of the twentieth century, children have been presented by the media and perceived by society as increasingly vulnerable. While using the discussion of childhood vaccinations in parenting magazines as a cultural site, this research explores the presentation of vaccinations, children, parenting, and vulnerability. Methodologically, I conducted a content analysis of 44 articles combined from Parents and Today’s Parent that focus on childhood vaccinations. Throughout the articles children were continually presented as vulnerable, and parents were presented as being responsible caretakers. In addition, a shift was noted where parents were expected to become experts themselves about vaccinations, instead of trusting the expertise of their doctors. The results, support existing literature that parenting magazines target middle-class mothers by supporting middle class ideals; Canadian and American publications distribute a similar message in their articles, that children are vulnerable; and individualism is increasing as parents become more educated about vaccines. This research also supports risk society theory through the identification of risks as being in a continuous cycle of change. The results extend existing literature by revealing that children are continually presented as vulnerable and at risk from a variety of aspects in contemporary society.
Runstedler, Cory, ""If we can prevent children from dying unnecessarily, I don't see a downside": An analysis of Vaccinations, Children, Parenting and Vulnerability in Parents and Today’s Parent articles about Childhood Vaccinations" (2016). Sociology Major Research Papers. 8.