Birthing Fathers: The Transformation of Men in American by Richard K. Reed

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By Richard K. Reed

"Birthing Fathers is a groundbreaking anthropological and sociological research of yank fatherhood and men’s position in birthing."—Robbie Davis-Floyd, writer of beginning as an American ceremony of Passage"Treating delivery as ritual, Reed makes shrewdpermanent use of his anthropological services, qualitative facts, and private event to deliver to existence the frustrations and joys males frequently come upon as they navigate the clinical version of birthing."—William Marsiglio, writer intercourse, males, and infants: tales of know-how and ResponsibilityIn the earlier twenty years, males have long gone from being excluded from the supply room to being admitted, then invited, and, ultimately, anticipated to take part actively within the delivery in their childrens. not mere observers, fathers attend child showers, visit birthing sessions, and percentage within the intimate, daily info in their companions’ pregnancies.In this certain learn, Richard Reed attracts at the feminist critique of professionalized scientific birthing to argue that the medical nature of scientific intervention distances fathers from baby supply. He explores men’s roles in childbirth and the ways that start transforms a man’s identification and his relatives along with his associate, his new child, and society. In different societies, start is well-known as an immense ceremony of passage for fathers. but, in American tradition, although fathers are admitted into supply rooms, little awareness is given to their transition to fatherhood. The ebook concludes with an exploration of what men’s roles in childbirth let us know approximately gender and American society. Reed means that it really is no twist of fate that men’s participation within the birthing procedure built in parallel to altering definitions of fatherhood extra commonly. during the last 20 years, it has develop into anticipated that fathers, as well as being powerful and constant, may be empathetic and nurturing. Well-researched, candidly written, and enriched with own money owed of over fifty males from all components of the area, this e-book is as a lot concerning the start of fathers because it is set fathers in delivery.

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Extra info for Birthing Fathers: The Transformation of Men in American Rites of Birth

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As men discover and create their identity and relations of fatherhood, they are brought into negotiation with various powerful actors, who are themselves negotiating diverse and often conflicting relations. Fathers had to fight their way into the birthing room. Throughout most of the last century, hospital policy prohibited fathers from watching the birth of their babies. In newspapers, legal briefs, and medical journals, physicians argued that fathers were unnecessary to birthing and a danger to mother and child.

The following suggests that hospital birthing is characterized by a biological perspective that ignores the social, spiritual, and psychological aspects of birth. Since fathers are primarily participants in these unrecognized facets of birthing, they were excluded from birthing rituals. This, in turn, reinforced the definition of birth as a biological enterprise. The new birthing rituals, which include fathers, recognize and legitimize the social, spiritual, and psychological aspects of birth. Fathers’ fight was part of the effort to redefine birth as a multifaceted event, and birthing became the ritual arena to negotiate the conflicting ideas about birth and the family.

One father recalled to me, “They took her [the baby] to the nursery and I remember walking through the halls in that getup, you know, the suit, and going to see my family and friends and feeling like, you know, really, like, wow, I’m a father. ” This identity joins previous self-concepts, often jockeying with other identities in shifting hierarchies. A man’s identity as a fraternity brother, for example, recedes as he assumes responsibility for his new son. As we shall see below, the rituals of pregnancy, labor, and delivery communicate a new series of ideas and identities to participants.

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