The Construction of Teenage Parenting in the Republic of Ireland

Dr Ciara Bradley
Tuesday, January 30, 2018 - 16:00

This chapter discusses the issue of teenage pregnancy in the Republic of Ireland. It explores the incidence of teenage pregnancy both historically and in recent years. It describes the particular social construction of teen pregnancy in Ireland, the influences on this and how these have evolved over time. The chapter includes an examination of some of the key legislative areas that pertain to teen pregnancy and the social policy responses to teen pregnancy and motherhood. The final section explores Ireland today to ascertain whether the assemblages of teen pregnancy and mothering have changed and if so, in what ways. It concludes that despite significant positive social changes in Ireland during the past fifty years, inequalities such as social class, educational opportunities and outcomes, ethnicity, race and others persist which intersect in ways that create the conditions for teen pregnancy to remain an issue in particular social locations more than others. Inequalities also affect outcomes for teen mothers and their families. For young women in these circumstances, Ireland remains a very difficult place to be a teenage mother.

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