Google+ Authentic Parenting: Feminism, Medicine, Consumerism and Vampires

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Feminism, Medicine, Consumerism and Vampires

I often wonder how we have come to a time where birth is no longer sacred and female, but medical and male. Where intervention is a bigger part of childbirth than trust.

A lot of modern medicine, not just in childbirth and pregnancy, but specifically when women are concerned, is like the clove of garlic for vampires: they're not sure it will help, there's no danger just yet, but at least they're doing something! At least they have that wondrous clove of garlic that has yet to be double blind tested...
And because women are inferior, there's no issue in butchering their cervix, squishing their mammary glands, cutting and prodding.
It's also a direct result of consumer society: if a product exists, we must use it. Doctors and hospitals are being 'persuaded' by pharmaceutical and medical industries that this is the top of the line product, if they don't have it, they're behind, they're not state of the art anymore. And since their primary concern is to attract as many customers - ahum patients - as possible, being the most impressive, state of the art institution is a big concern.
That's why some hospitals now do offer waterbirth or baby friendly labels. Not because they actually care, but because they generate media and traffic.

This is why birth is definitely a feminist issue. Any medicine aimed at women should be a feminist issue. Any part of society where women are supposed to give up their voice, their rights and their uniqueness should be a feminist issue. And the medical world is probably the most ardent at this. Women shouldn't have to be butchered just for the care provider's mental wellbeing, or for his fear of litigation.



  1. Great thoughts! I've shared this on my Facebook business page!

  2. I just found your blog and enjoyed this post. As much as I read about childbirth, I've rarely heard it talked about in terms of being a feminist issue. I wrote a post awhile back on this same topic: Looking forward to reading more!

  3. We think alike. When I got pregnant and started reading about childbirth and labor, I was SHOCKED to learn what typically goes on in industrialized societies. Childbirth is most definitely an area where active feminism is needed. Sadly, most women don't even realize they DO have choices in childbirth, even in hospitals.

  4. Like Ashley said, childbirth from a feminist point of view is interesting and you are absolutely right. When we live in a culture that objectifies women, it makes it easy to industrialize birth instead of treating it like an important rite of passage for each individual.

  5. I really admire your way of delivering your thoughts. I really agree that hospitals use women now to experiment new and expensive techniques.


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