Childbirth in South Asia: Old Paradoxes and New Challenges

ISBN : 9780190130718

Clemence Jullien; Roger Jeffery
360 Pages
148 x 222 mm
Pub date
Jun 2021
Send mail

Across the world, the conditions of childbirth are changing but not all in the same direction. Women in Western countries press for more home deliveries, and to confront some of the effects of the over-medicalisation of motherhood. Most developing countries, by contrast, promote deliveries in clinics and hospitals, and stigmatize women who deliver at home. Mobile phones and social media are pressed into service to identify high-risk mothers and to offer them pregnancy and delivery advice. All of the South Asian countries have been accused of neglecting childbirth and women's healthcare. The Millennium Development Goals (2000-2015) prompted important new Government schemes across South Asia, designed to address the issues of safe motherhood and childbirth. The Sustainable Development Goals (2015-2030) now mandate further efforts to reduce maternal and neo-natal mortality. This book illustrates the continuing paradoxes as well as the new challenges linked to childbirth in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal. It brings together anthropologists, historians, and sociologists who reflect on the implications of these new schemes for women's own experiences.


Table for content
List of tables
List of acronyms
Section 1: Historical perspective
01. Changing childbirth in 21st Century South Asia (Clemence Jullien & Roger Jeffery)
02. Colonial Legacies and Maternal Health in South Asia (Samiksha Sehrawat)
Section 2: Continuing relevance of 'traditional birth attendants'
03. Forms and ethics of Baloch midwifery contesting the violations of biomedicalized childbirth in Pakistan (Fouzieyha Towghi)
04. Training birth attendants in India. Authoritative knowledge social forms, practices and paradoxe
(Pascale Hancart Petitet)
Section 3: Contested categories
05. Since it's a pleasure to save somebody's life, I do this.' Midwifery and safe motherhood practices in urban India
(Helen Vallianatos)
06.Childbirth in transit. The changing nature of motherhood in Maharashtra
(Deepra Dandekar)
Section 4: Contemporary birth attendants
07. Outsiders in the Village: Class, Space, and the Shortage of Women Doctors in Rural Rajasthan, India (Jocelyn Killmer)
08. Care's profit: precarity and professionalisation of health workers in private maternal clinics in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh, India(Isabelle Lange, Sunita Bhadauria, Sunita Singh & Loveday Penn-Kekana)
09. Protocols and Setups: producing professional obstetrical knowledge in the periphery of Mumbai, India(Neha Madhiwalla)
Section 5: Institutionalisation of childbirth
10. Son preference in India: stigmatisation and surveillance in maternity wards in Jaipur, Rajasthan (Clemence Jullien)
11. Politics of childbirth in Nepal: the case of the maternal mortality ratio (Jeevan R. Sharma & Radha Adhikari)
Section 6: New technologies
12. Discourses of childlessness in Bangladesh: power and agency (Taslima Mirza)
13. Digitalizing community health: mobile phones to improve maternal health in rural India (Marine al Dahdah & Alok Kumar)

About the author: 

Roger Jeffery is Professor, School of Social and Political Science, University of Edinburgh Clemence Jullien is Lecturer, Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies, University of Zurich.

The price listed on this page is the recommended retail price for Japan. When a discount is applied, the discounted price is indicated as “Discount price”. Prices are subject to change without notice.