• Marie Tannit Hedetoft-Fraire Romano
Mothers and babies, babies and mothers. As normal as it may seem in most cultures where the matriarch hierarchy is strongest, to look at the mother to find answers in regards to the baby and vice-versa in any given area of interest, a man is always necessary in this equation whether it be through a bigger or a smaller contribution, seen as co-constructors or even as the breadwinners more than co-parents. What have in such case been the reasons for researchers to focus their attentions towards the women and not acknowledging or being interested in the participation of the men? Very little has been investigated on fatherhood when it comes to consumption of baby gear, role transition, and consumer identity.
The aim of this thesis is to focus on how new fathers experience this life changing event in regards to consumption of baby gear and how they live this change and build upon their new acquired role manifested at the light of their consumer identity through consumption in light of the intercultural environment they are inserted in. All in all, the ultimate desire with this thesis is to look at the consumption of baby gear from a father’s perspective and learn from what we see and understand on what is being processed in terms of consumption in the mind of the new father identity transitioned into.
Therefore, a main research question has been established where the fundamental problem in question is addressed, that being the lack of space for the cosmopolitan man in terms of consumption of baby gear and the undefined role those men come to assume once becoming a father. Also, the new negotiations that will play a role in the fatherhood position have led to:
How is “the Danish cosmopolitan man” consuming for the baby to build and negotiate his new acquired father role and what does this express in regards to his consumer identity?
With the main question, three more sub-questions were developed and with the aid of theories available in the academic world and in-depth interviews held with six Danish and foreign couples with small children, a thorough analysis of these men’s insight to fatherhood was reached.
The “Danish cosmopolitan man” is perhaps being able to use consumption in his favor to construct the new identity as a father that becomes needed when he has a child. In some ways consumption has minimized this gap between the real self and the ideal self, but as a cosmopolitan man in the opened-minded Danish society, he has more tools, such as great communication media, cheap flights back and forth from the family’s second nation, and mainly, feelings of love and interest for their child which has been proven through the interviews held are not feeling exclusive to mothers alone.
Publication date29 May 2015
Number of pages43
ID: 213190724