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Is there anything about pregnancy and childbirth around the world that you'd like to find out? Maybe you're going through a particular aspect yourself and wondering how people in other cultures deal with it?

Let me know and I'll try to find out more about it for a future post. I'd love to hear from you.


  1. Great stuff, Janet - you have started just the way I did when I wrote Dream Babies. Cross cultural approach is fascinating; also the contrasts just within Europe [which would make a vg book . . . ]
    Xtna Hardyment

  2. Thanks Tina, thats a real complement! Yes, I find it all totally fascinating and you're right that you don't have to look to non-Western cultures to find huge differences. My sister-in-law in Paris has had very different experiences to me here in the UK. Janet x

  3. Hello,
    I've just come across your very interesting blog this evening and wondered if you might be interested in our new book, Choosing Cesarean, A Natural Birth Plan (Canadian and British authors, American publisher).

  4. This blog is a bit ethnocentric, especially for someone who has a background in anthropology.
    I especially dislike your post that states that human bodies are not designed for childbirth. Of course our bodies are designed for childbirth, all creatures are designed to reproduce effectively. It is only when you couple cultural beliefs and behaviors (like over-medicalization) that we start seeing complications in childbirth.

  5. Thanks for your comment.

    In the post you are talking about (post #3 I was trying to explain that the main factor driving our evolution and therefore body shape, was becoming bipedal. The many advantages that humans gained from being bipedal came at a cost, and one of the costs was a greater difficulty in giving birth.

    If the main factor driving our evolution was effective childbirth, then I imagine our bodies would have evolved into a completely different shape.

  6. All creatures have a behavior plan as well as a body plan.
    I don't believe that bipedalism was the main factor in our evolution and if it was, then there's a child birthing procedure to fit us, bipedal and whatever else we are.
    Check out the movie, "The Business of Being Born".
    You'll see several women having different experiences, but all situations were made easier by using a birthing tub.
    I'd say this gives a good indicator of how wrong our current methods are and what the original situation must have been.

    I was watching a documentary some years ago.
    In the film, scientists were tissue typing the entire population of a Scandinavian country - supposedly to make matching organ donors and recipients easier.
    They found the 7% of the children there were not the children of their fathers.
    I'd say that gives a good indicator that cuckholding has been a regular strategy for both men and women since the beginning of civilization at least.

    It explains the 'double standard' for male and female sexual behavior in so many cultures, as well as providing one of the foundations of the Aryan social system which most of us live under - whether we know it or not.
    I can explain this in detail if you like.

    - Raymond

  7. Thanx for sharing the Malaysian experience, will surely inform my loved ones about it. what advise can u give to me as am still struggling with flabby tummy after almost 5yrs after delivery.