Lone Motherhood, Poverty and the Meaning of Money

Afnan Attrash-Najjar, Einat Lavee, Ariel Wilkis, Roni Strier

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Lone-mother–headed families are key targets of poverty research and financial coaching training programs worldwide. Yet, despite the centrality of this population in poverty studies, there is little research on how this population construes the meaning of money in developed economies. This article focuses on the social construction of money among low-income lone mothers in Israel—a highly market-oriented, neoliberal economy. Based on a qualitative analysis, the study found five main representations of money: survival money, motherhood money, earned money, coping money, and resistance to dominant views of money. Our findings confirm the notion that money exists outside the sphere of the market and has contextualized meanings reflecting gender as well as cultural and social structures.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAffilia - Journal of Women and Social Work
StateAccepted/In press - 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by the National Insurance Institute of Israel.

Publisher Copyright:
© The Author(s) 2022.


  • lone mothers
  • motherhood
  • poverty
  • social construction of money
  • sociology of money

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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