The Shape of a Mother is a newly renovated blog (still somewhat under construction, so search via the search engine, not tags) that recently made it on to the blog roll (thanks to Jackie!) and I thought I’d give you all a formal introduction. This blog takes a look at women’s bodies during and after pregnancy to try and dispel the sense that such forms are abnormal, unhealthy, and shameful. It includes contributions from many people looking to post pictures of their post-baby tummies in an effort to foster pride in the many shapes that motherhood can bring.It occurred to me the other day as I was checking it out that many people, including many newly pregnant women, probably never get to see the way women’s bodies change during and after pregnancy, just as many never get to attend a birth before giving birth themselves. Of course the medicalization of birth and stigma around women’s fertility generally contributes to this censorship and accompanying shame. What I find especially interesting, though, is how these women have taken it on themselves to combat a seemingly impossible barrier to acceptance by banding together and sharing photographs, at the same time creating community and diminishing the power of dominant norms within that community.