What qualified as a natural birth in the 16th century? In this post, we look at what the Birth of Mankind, from 1540, had to say about a natural birth in the Tudor Era including birthing positions, recipes for potions, pessaries, vaginal incense, pain relieving lubricants, herbal baths with toxic heavy metals, as well as what kind of diet and exercise the Tudor woman should have in later pregnancy and during labor.
The frequently misrepresented sketch of a Ugandan woman’s surgical delivery, in 1879, as witnessed and recorded by Robert W. Felkin and presented to the Edinburgh Obstetrical Society in 1884.
Learn more about the first book in English on pregnancy, birth, and newborn care: The Byrth of Mankynde, 1540.
These hips don’t lie. They were selected for by evolutionary pressures right along with bigger headed babies. Learn why female humans tend to have wider hips than males and why it has little to do with birth.
So you’re an obstetrician in the early 20th century. You want to expand your practice to include all pregnancies and births, not just the high risk ones (but not those of black women, oh no!) So you gather up some sexist and racist drivel and viola! The Obstetrical Dilemma is born… and it’s killing women to this day.