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Signalements et placements des enfants de mère toxicomane

Abstract : This report summarizes a text presented for the "Habilitation à diriger des recherches" at St-Quentin en Yvelines university in November 2005. The effects of consuming psychoactive substances during pregancy are primarily medical, such as intrauterine growth retardation, premature birth, and infant weaning syndrome, but they are also social given that the mother risks losing custody of her child/newborn. In fact, drug-addicted women who become mothers may be situated at the intersection of four sets of norms: legal norms, since drug use is illegal; social norms defining what a good mother is; medical norms governing how high-risk pregnancies should be followed; and gender norms, since drug addiction is perceived as essentially a male phenomenon and the harm done to the fetus by mother's male partner--smoking, drinking, violence against pregnant women--is often not taken into account. This study examines the entire chain of professions involved in the process that runs from identifying a child living with a drug-addicted mother--a woman often in highly precarious socio-economic circumstances--to removing the child from her custody and finding another home for it. That process is analyzed in terms of the practices and representations of medical, social-service, and judiciary personnel with regard to this potential "bad mother." In counterpoint it presents biographical accounts of women who at some point in their lives lost custody of their child, resituating in the long-term experience of the affected families the sequence of events by which the child was taken in charge by the authorities.
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Contributor : Laurence Simmat-Durand Connect in order to contact the contributor
Submitted on : Friday, February 5, 2010 - 1:45:19 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, June 25, 2022 - 8:49:27 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Friday, June 18, 2010 - 5:25:06 PM


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  • HAL Id : halshs-00453367, version 1



Laurence Simmat-Durand. Signalements et placements des enfants de mère toxicomane. 2006, pp.240. ⟨halshs-00453367⟩



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