Exclusive breastfeeding during the first six months of life is the recommended guideline, and the promotion of exclusive breastfeeding is a top priority for both national and international health organizations. The benefits of breastfeeding to both mother and baby reduces the burden of health disparity and promotes long-term healthful outcomes. Continued rates of low breastfeeding among Black women has brought forth the need for a methodological paradigm shift that enables nurses and researchers to explore creative, evidence-based, culturally relevant and population-specific interventions to enhance breastfeeding among Black women. This dissertation is an exploration of the use of art images of Black women breastfeeding to better understand this population’s maternal attitudes towards breastfeeding and the personal factors that influence those maternal attitudes. The first chapter, Overview of the Dissertation Research Focus, introduces my program of research and topic of each manuscript. The second chapter, Vulnerability: A Concept Analysis, provides a conceptual analysis of vulnerability. The third chapter, Strategically Positioned: Breastfeeding, Advocacy, and the Hands-On Nurse, discusses the early societal barriers and their impact on breastfeeding. The primary research in the fourth chapter, Effects of a Visual Artwork Intervention and Personal Progress Factors on Maternal Attitudes Towards Breastfeeding Among Black Women, tests the visual artwork intervention.

Date of publication

Fall 11-16-2018

Document Type




Persistent identifier


Committee members

Dr. Jenifer Chilton, Dr. Ellen Fineout-Overholt, Dr. Danice Greer, and Dr. Elizabeth Lisot-Nelson


Doctorate of Philosophy in Nursing

Included in

Nursing Commons