Birthing black mothers: Birth work and the making of black maternal political subjects

Jennifer C. Nash*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper traces three tensions that undergird contemporary doula practice: questions about training and professionalization, questions about the meanings of medicalization, and questions about the exceptionality of birthing. In all three cases, while doulas are called upon to be agents of crisis mitigation, particularly in relationship to black women, and to use togetherness to mediate obstetric violence, these tensions complicate efforts to "resolve" the crisis black mothers face, and at times further suture black maternal bodies to crisis, placing black maternal bodies as the space in need of remediation, repair, and transformation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number0054
Pages (from-to)29-50
Number of pages22
JournalWSQ
Volume47
Issue number3-4
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

Keywords

  • Birth work
  • Doulas
  • Maternal health
  • Reproductive politics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies

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