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Pregnancy & Birth

Birth Films: Childbirth in the U.S.

Looking to learn more about your birth options or about childbirth in the United States? Several recent powerful films provide education and inspiration to pregnant women and to those who seek to understand the forces that affect women childbirth choices.

THE BUSINESS OF BEING BORN and MORE BUSINESS OF BEING BORN

These films, produced by actress Ricki Lake, seeks to understand and question birth practices in the United States. The films weave together intimate birth stories with a discussion of the history, culture and economics of childbirth in the U.S. today.

The films are sometimes screened nationally and can be streamed on Netflix and Amazon. You can find out more at The Business of Being Born website.

BORN IN THE U.S.A.

Originally shown on PBS, this film “provides an in-depth look at low-risk childbirth in America by presenting three different types of caregivers and settings: an obstetrician working at a teaching hospital, a licensed midwife attending home births, and a certified nurse-midwife bridging both worlds in an urban, out-of-hospital birth center.

By examining the culture of birth practices in America, Born in the U.S.A. raises questions about technology, safety and quality of care, and it challenges parents to be proactive about getting the kind of care they want and need.”

The film can be purchased for home use for $35 + $3.50 for shipping and handling. It can also be streamed online for $9.99. To find out more about the film or to buy it, go to PatchWorks Films.

IT’S MY BODY, MY BABY, MY BIRTH

This film follows 7 women as they progress through their pregnancies and births. Geared more toward women and their partners who are making decisions about birth, the film focuses on the joys and satisfactions of natural childbirth.

It's My Body, My Baby, My Birth can be purchased for $10 plus $2.50 for shipping and handling. To find out more, go to the film's website.

ORGASMIC BIRTH

A 2008 documentary film that follows 11 women giving birth and "examines the intimate nature of birth, an everyday miracle, and the powerful role it plays in women’s lives when they are permitted to experience it fully."

You can read a review of the film by OBOS co-founder Jane Pincus. The film can be streamed on Amazon and Netflix. Additional information about the film and how to purchase it are available at Orgasmic Birth.

LABORING UNDER AN ILLUSION: Mass Media Childbirth vs. The Real Thing

The film can be streamed or purchased through Amazon.com. You can read a review of the film by OBOS co-founder Jane Pincus.

REDUCING INFANT MORTALITY



A film exploring how and why the current maternity care system in the U.S. is failing babies and families before, during and after birth. The film is available for free from ReducingInfantMortality.com.

Written by: Our Bodies Ourselves contributors
Last revised: January 2014

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