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Laboring Under an Illusion


laboring under an illusion

Laboring Under an Illusion

Title: Laboring Under an Illusion

Format: DVD

Cost: about $20

Available from: Birth Media.com

This 50 minute video explores the effects of culture on our beliefs about childbirth. Using clips from major motion films, television shows and natural birth videos, the director encourages viewers to discern the hidden messages being sent through the media.  Not only are viewers encouraged to question Hollywood birth beliefs, but also to consider what is or is not true in “educational” birth videos.

Jennifer’s Thoughts:

  • This video is too long to use in any childbirth class, but may work well as a library item or as a presentation for a women’s night.
  • There are some brief shots of nudity which may be unacceptable to more sensitive viewers.
  • Clips range from I Love Lucy to more modern media such as the movie Juno, which means most TV viewers will relate to images shown.
  • May work best if viewers are given a sheet of reflection questions for discussion after viewing the film.
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Jennifer Vanderlaan CNM MPH is the author of the BirthingNaturally.net website. She has been working with expectant families since 2000, training doulas and childbirth educators, and midwives. She has worked with midwives in Central America and Sub-Saharan Africa. Her interest in public health grew in 2010, and she is now a PhD student in a nursing program learning to become a producer of knowledge.

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