Issue 91

Midwifery Today Issue 91Issue 91, Autumn 2009

Theme: Traditional Midwifery

Bonnie Urquhart Gruenberg is an artist, photographer and writer, as well as a practicing certified nurse-midwife and the owner of Birth Muse Press. Her portraits express a reverence for life, honoring the intimacy between mother and infant, the innocence of childhood and the honesty of horses. She is the author and illustrator of four books, including the award-winning Birth Emergency Skills Training: Manual for Out-of-Hospital Midwives.

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What I Have Seen

The author describes the horrors of the hospital births she has witnessed in Ukraine, recounting scenes where the laboring women are treated inhumanely and ridiculed for showing signs of pain. This piece is one of four articles in this issue describing different aspects of birth in Ukraine.

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Doña Cuca, Wise Elder and Midwife

In this excerpt from Sister MorningStar’s upcoming book from Motherbaby Press, The Power of Women, Sister MorningStar remembers Doña Cuca, Mexican village healer and midwife, and through her story, honors the gifts of experience and wisdom that are passed down to a new generation of midwives. Read more…. Doña Cuca, Wise Elder and Midwife

Faith

Trust that women can birth the babies their bodies create and they will believe it too. Daisy Case asserts that interventionist births are not a result of a failure in physiology, but rather, a lack of faith.

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The Birth Dance

This short, sweet piece describes the interaction between father-to-be and laboring mother at a Ukrainian homebirth. This piece is one of four articles in this issue describing different aspects of birth in Ukraine.

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Traditional Midwifery

We are losing the knowledge and wisdom of traditional midwifery as fast as we are losing the rainforest. Just as we are discovering this incredible knowledge base, it is disappearing. Read more…. Traditional Midwifery

Who Benefits from Training Traditional Midwives?

Davenport discusses the ramifications of training traditional midwives or skilled birth attendants based on conformity to a medical system that may or may not be in the best interest of birthing mothers. Read more…. Who Benefits from Training Traditional Midwives?

Breech, Posterior and a Deflexed Head! An Active Birth Solution?

This article outlines possible solutions to a deflexed, posterior breech birth. The author makes the case that active birth is one of the most effective approaches.

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Some Traditional Practices from Around the World

Some Traditional Practices from Around the World

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Are Traditional Chinese Medicine Theories of Normal Delivery Supported by Evidence-based Medicine?

Traditional Chinese Medicine is a summary of ancient practice experiences, rather than the results of randomized controlled trials. This article uses evidence from modern scientific knowledge to determine whether TCM theories of normal delivery are well-supported by evidence-based medicine.

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Homebirth Through a Mother’s Eyes

The author tells the story of her empowering late-pregnancy change from planning an obstetrician-led hospital birth to having a midwife-attended homebirth.

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Some Traditional Umbilical Cord Care Practices in Developing Countries

Babies born in developing countries around the world often do not have the benefit of sanitary methods for cutting the umbilical cord or keeping the cord clean. This article discusses a variety of the traditional cord care practices that have evolved in different countries, some of which are harmful and some that help to ensure that bacteria do not enter the cord stump.

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At the Gates of Life and Death

Working as a home health aide while pursuing her midwifery education, Rachel Knudsen discovers the parallels between the way people enter the world and the way they leave it, and makes the case for both conscious birth and conscious death.

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