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Hi, Jenne, I read that article.

The reason that the 1980s saw such a boom in childbirth education is because of the homebirth movement and the boom in husbands in the delivery room.

This was something that homebirthers and the women's movement pushed...the hospitals accomodated them ... to a point ... in so far as their sacred procedures were still in force...

Little by little the old procedures have disappeared...no more complete perineal shaves, no more 3H enemas, but the sacred I.V.'s, EFM's, epidurals, bedridden, strapped legs, persistent cervical checks, time limits, starvation, and episiotomies have survived...

Read the 1973 Immaculate Deception by Susanne Arms and decide for yourself if things have really improved.

I had one of the first Women's Studies classes at UCLA in 1974 and you should know that if you read an account of a labor from A.D. 98, that it is probably one of a woman in the upper, leisure class, a woman who did not work much and had servants, therefore, she got little exercise and when her body did get into active labor, she could not ask her handmaid to do it for her, she then was in trouble and the court obstetrician was called...most of the lower, working classes had midwives.

Midwives did share information with each other...usually the granny midwife in the village was the woman who had raised her own children and then had acquired some knowledge from the woman who delivered her children and began to help her....
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by love_homebirthing
I personally love reading anything about the history of childbirth and found Witches, Midwives, and Nurses: A History of Women Healers a fantastic read (although infuriating at the same time b/c the truth of how things have been). It's more of a pamphlet than a book - you could easily read it in an hour. I'd highly recommend it to anyone wanting historically accurate information.
This is the best book ever written on the subject and it is very short..

Thank you, love_homebirthing, I was trying to remember the name of this little book!
 

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Originally Posted by mwherbs
the women who came alone across the plains to the west were the isolated ones
I have several autobiographies of old physicians dating into the 1800's and none support this "history" article
ITA
 
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