Q: You write that the modern pressure on women to breastfeed “literally embodies social anxieties about risk, health and motherhood”—many of which have little to do with infant feeding per se. What do you mean?
A: I think we are a society that is consumed with risk. There is a degree of scientific sophistication in our lives that we don’t understand. That breeds, paradoxically, anxiety and a sense that we can control anything if we can just have the right information. The idea that we can prevent terrible things from happening to our children is very appealing. Science tells us how to behave, how to be the healthiest, and the information we get on breastfeeding is in keeping with that. What we don’t seem to realize in the case of breastfeeding is the science does not provide evidence for the claims that are made.
And Texas A&M’s blog talks about Wolf’s opposition to a overly zealous PR campaigns in favor of breastfeeding.