Normaliserade föräldrar : en undersökning av Försäkringskassans broschyrer 1974–2007

Sammanfattning: The main purpose of this dissertation is to analyse and identify problems arising from the Swedish Social Insurance Agency’s (SSIA) perceptions of parents, as they appear in the brochures targeted at expectant or new parents between 1974 and 2007. The aim is to distinguish who are being pointed out, constructed, and normalised as parents; and to analyse the functions of the recipients and the senders respectively. The aim is to be considered in the light of the SSIA’s commitment to gender equality, a policy that promotes equal access to the insurance of parents to share the parent’s insurance more equally. The dissertation is based on a theoretical framework that may principally be described as a feminist discourse analysis, which, among other things, means that a constructivist approach is of central importance. In addition, an intersectional perspective is an important starting point, putting the focus on the interaction and interdependence between different social categorisations. In four analysing chapters, the material is being tackled from different approaches or angles. In the first chapter, a picture is drawn of the institutional and political context that sets the prerequisites of the insurance regulations as well as the way the texts have been written and may be understood. The second chapter presents an analysis, in the terms of space deixis, of whom is/are being pointed out and positioned as recipient/s by SSIA. In the third chapter, an analysis of the normalised notions of parents that are identified in the texts; and of what parents are being favoured and described as ‘normal’. In the fourth chapter, the functions of the different actors are being analysed, showing how the relationship between the SSIA and the parents is constructed from in the texts. The results show that, in all brochures, parenthood is strongly gender-marked and that gender equality, above all, is to be understood as a quantitatively even distribution between mothers and fathers. In today’s brochures, the agency identifies and normalises recipients who primarily are biological mothers with orderly conditions, living in nuclear families with biological children. The older brochures have a higher level of gender neutrality in their texts, where mothers and fathers are placed equally and at the same distance from the position of the sender. The newer brochures, however, represent a wider range of social categorisations, and thus present a more complex picture of parenthood. The results also show that the function of SSIA in the texts is primarily economic, and that there is no obligation for parents to share the parent’s insurance equally, despite the political resolutions that impose this task on the agency.

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