Mesoamerica | Frida, Diego & The Muralists
Chicana/o Art | Mictlan | Nepantla Aesthetics

Pregnant woman in a Ball of Yarn,


In Pregnant Woman in a Ball of Yarn Barbara tackled the issue of unwanted pregnancy and the inevitable invisibility, entrapment and social isolation of young unwed mothers. Perhaps one of her most renowned images, this 1978 lithograph captures visually the very real economic immobilization experienced by young, poor women of color who find themselves pregnant with no, or very little, emotional support. I can still recall my very visceral response to this image as I reflected on my own experiences and those of so many other women I have known in my life in response to pregnancy. It is a sad image on so many levels, a haunting reminder of what happens to poor women when pregnancy determines their economic circumstances, an image that flies in the face of the sanctification of motherhood as a pillar in Mexican and Chicana/o culture.