Emotions and Wellbeing over the Perinatal Period – a book launch and roundtable

Supported by the Social and Global Studies Centre, the Social Research in Health program held a two-part event on Thursday 28 February to showcase the program’s research outputs from their Healthdirect Australia-funded project Emotional Experiences in Early Parenthood of Australian Families.

The first part of the event comprised a roundtable titled ‘Supporting Perinatal Wellbeing in a Diverse and Changing Society: Bringing Research and Practice into Closer Dialogue’. Twenty-eight academics, practitioners and policymakers gathered for a thoughtful and searching discussion about how research and practice can work better together to both explore the emotional health and wellbeing of new parents, particularly those from marginalised or minority groups, and inform and foster better care over the perinatal period. New research translation ideas were seeded, and participants commented on their appreciation of the opportunity to connect with people from outside their particular disciplinary or professional home.

Roundtable discussion

Following afternoon tea, Professor Tina Miller (Oxford Brookes University, UK) launched the edited collection Paths to Parenthood: Emotions on the Journey through Pregnancy, Childbirth and Early Parenting co-edited by Renata Kokanović and Kate Johnston-Ataata along with Paula A. Michaels from Monash University (2018, Palgrave MacMillan). Professor Miller, herself a renowned scholar of the transition to parenthood, described the book as ‘ambitious’ and ‘innovative’ in its interdisciplinary, collective analysis of a single dataset. Summarising Paths to Parenthood, she commented: ‘Together, the chapters weave a highly readable account of contemporary experiences of Australian parenting, with attention to historical, cultural and policy contexts, while evoking the intensity and overwhelming emotional experience which is motherhood, fatherhood, and parenthood.’

Kate Johnston-Ataata with special guest speaker Prof Tina Miller

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