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A Cultural History of Pregnancy

Pregnancy, Medicine and Culture, 1750-2000

Authors: Hanson, C.

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Hardcover $125.00
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  • ISBN 978-0-333-98644-8
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Softcover $99.00
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  • ISBN 978-1-349-43107-6
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  • This title is currently reprinting. You can pre-order your copy now.
About this book

Hanson explores the different ways in which pregnancy has been constructed and interpreted in Britain over the last 250 years. Drawing on a wide range of sources, including obstetric texts, pregnancy advice books, literary texts, popular fiction and visual images, she analyzes changing attitudes to key issues such as the relative rights of mother and foetus and the degree to which medical intervention is acceptable in pregnancy. Hanson also considers the effects of medical and social changes on the subjective experience of pregnancy.

About the authors

CLARE HANSON is Professor of English at Loughborough University. She has published widely on women's writing and on nineteenth- and twentieth-century literature, and her books include Katherine Mansfield (co-author), Short Stories and Short Fictions, 1880-1980, Virginia Woolf and most recently a study of the woman's novel, Hysterical Fictions (Palgrave Macmillan, 2000).

Reviews

'As a teacher, I am grateful to Hanson for bringing forth a study that combines a careful historical reconstruction of the scientific practices surrounding pregnancy with incisive analysis of cultural representations responding to and shaping those practices. A timely and much-needed book!' - Dr Lisa Zunshine, Department of English, University of Kentucky

'A fascinating study which combines clear exposition of scientific thought with incisive analysis of a range of cultural texts and contexts. Absorbing and illuminating, this book makes a major contribution both to our understanding of the history of medicine and of the intricate interrelations between medicine and culture.' - Peter Gluckmann FRS, Distinguished Professor, University of Auckland

'The historical sweep of this study is impressive and its emphasis on the way pregnancy is framed and experienced makes it a landmark text. 'Informal' knowledges shared by midwives and mothers over the centuries are set deftly against the discourses of science and medical observation. The resulting argument illustrates how the images, myths and 'facts' about pregnancy contribute to shifting accounts of what pregnancy means in a given culture at a given time. From the rise in obstetrics in the eighteenth century to the ever-shifting boundaries of reproductive technology in the twenty-first century, this book captures the continuing tensions between our definitions of nature and culture, science and experience, to show that pregnancy, as both medical condition and cultural experience, is ripe for re-evaluation.' - Imelda Whelehan, Professor of English and Women's Studies, De Montfort University

'Hanson builds up a rounded picture of the joys, pains and prejudices that have surrounded pregnancy since 1750.' - Beth Wright, Women: A Cultural Review


Table of contents (6 chapters)

Table of contents (6 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook $99.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-0-230-51054-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $125.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-0-333-98644-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $99.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-349-43107-6
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • This title is currently reprinting. You can pre-order your copy now.

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
A Cultural History of Pregnancy
Book Subtitle
Pregnancy, Medicine and Culture, 1750-2000
Authors
Copyright
2004
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan UK
Copyright Holder
Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited
eBook ISBN
978-0-230-51054-8
DOI
10.1057/9780230510548
Hardcover ISBN
978-0-333-98644-8
Softcover ISBN
978-1-349-43107-6
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
VI, 214
Topics