Brought to Bed Childbearing in America, 1750-1950

ISBN-10: 0195056906
ISBN-13: 9780195056907
Edition: N/A
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Description: Based on personal accounts by birthing women and their medical attendants, Brought to Bed reveals how childbirth has changed from colonial times to the present.Judith Walzer Leavitt's study focuses on the traditional woman-centered home-birthing  More...

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Book details

List price: $34.99
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 11/10/1988
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 304
Size: 5.00" wide x 8.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 1.166
Language: English

Based on personal accounts by birthing women and their medical attendants, Brought to Bed reveals how childbirth has changed from colonial times to the present.Judith Walzer Leavitt's study focuses on the traditional woman-centered home-birthing practices, their replacement by male doctors, and the movement from the home to the hospital. She explains that childbearing women and their physicians gradually changed birth places because they believed the increased medicalization would make giving birth safer and more comfortable. Ironically, because of infection, infant and maternal mortality did not immediately decline. She concludes thatbirthing women held considerable power in determining labor and delivery events as long as childbirth remained in the home. The move to the hospital in the twentieth century gave the medical profession the upper hand. Leavitt also discusses recent events in American obstetrics that illustrate how womenhave attempted to retrieve some of the traditional women--and family--centered aspects of childbirth.

Scott Taylor is a photographer whose photographs have appeared in many local, state, regional, and national magazines, publications, and galleries; he works from his studio and gallery in historic Beaufort, North Carolina.Judith Walzer Leavitt is Rupple Bascom and Ruth Bleier Professor of Medical History and Women's Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison.

Introduction
"Under the Shadow of Maternity": Childbirth and Women's Lives in America
"Science" Enters the Birthing Room: The Impact of Physician Obstetrics
"Overcivilization and Maternity": Differences in Women's Childbirth Experiences
"Only a Woman Can Know": The Role of Gender in the Birthing Room
"The Greatest Blessing of This Age": Pain Relief in Obstetrics
Why Women Suffer So: Meddlesome Midwifery and Scrupulous Cleanliness
"Alone Among Strangers": Birth Moves to the Hospital
Decision-Making and the Process of Change
Epilogue
Notes
Chronology of Events in Childbirth History
Glossary of Medical Terms
Index

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