Soutenance de thèse

Keeping head above water : social presence in the transitions of Brazilian women to motherhood. Comparing experiences in Brazil, France, Portugal and Sweden.


The main objective of this thesis was characterizing and analysing social presence in the transition(s) of Brazilian women from privileged classes to motherhood, in Brazil, France, Portugal and Sweden, in recent years. As a final goal, it intended to contribute to de-construct the hegemonic model of good motherhood in Brazil, which is established from the experiences of middle-class white Brazilian women. As methodological strategy, it focused on Brazilian mothers‘ experiences of presences, using Computer-Mediated Communication and three methods in parallel: a documentary research on official reports of perinatal health and family policies, biographical interviews and recording of daily diaries, articulated through a phenomenological perspective. Therefore, in my fieldwork I searched, in a spiral drifting, how certain moral rhetorics associated to gender, class and racial norms are reproduced by privileged mothers in maternal transitions. Beyond of this process of reproducing hegemonic representation of motherhood, I also found generating hesitations and ethical enactment among these women towards marginalized mothers such as racialized, single and poor ones. Finally, this thesis discusses how care ethics raise from daily parental relationships and how improving responsive social presence is quite significant for the promotion of such ethics beyond of feminine care work.



  • M. Marc Bessin (Directeur de thèse), CNRS
  • Mme Felismina Mendes (Directrice de thèse), Université d’Evora (Portugal)
  • Mme Laurinda Abreu, Université d’Evora (Portugal)
  • Mme Hélène Bretin, Université Paris 13
  • Mme Amelia Maria Cavaca Augusto, Universidade da Beira Interior (Portugal)
  • Mme Teresa-Maria da Conceiçao Joaquim, Universidade Aberta (Portugal)
  • Mme Maria de Fatima Nunes, Université d’Evora (Portugal)

Informations pratiques

  • Mardi 23 mai 2017 - 14:00
  • Université d’Evora (Portugal) - une Visioconférence sera prévue à l'EHESS (salle A07_51), 54 boulevard Raspail 75006 Paris
  • DOCTORAT PHOENIX en partenariat avec l'Université d'Evora (Portugal)