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Childbirth without Fear: The Principles and Practice of Natural Childbirth Paperback – 6 Sep 2004
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A brilliant, courageous classic. -- Ina May Gaskin, author of Ina May's Guide to Childbirth
A fascinating read ... for all those seeking to pursue childbirth as a normal physiological process. Michel Odent's foreword is excellent. -- The Practicing Midwife, January 2006
Seminal - a classic insight into labour and birth. -- New Digest (National Childbirth Trust)
From the Publisher
'Dr Grantly Dick-Read has always been an inspiration to me. His humanity, love and above all faith in women and their innate mothering skills is truly remarkable. In an age where birth has often been overtaken by obstetrics Dr Dick-Reads philosophy is still as fresh as it was when he originally wrote this book. I highly recommend it.'
Yehudi Gordon - obstetrician & author
A fascinating insight into normal birth at a time when endorphins were not known, modern midwifery did not exist and women had already learned to fear labour. Dick-Read, possibly the worlds first childbirth activist, celebrates womens innate capacity for safe and easy birth in a challenging book that will excite, amaze, infuriate and uplift its readers.'
Andrea Robertson - independent childbirth educator and author
'A 21st century edition of this historic - even legendary - book must be warmly welcomed.'
Michel Odent - obstetrician and author
'When I was heavily pregnant with my first child 25 years ago this book fell into my hands. That was the start of my belief in natural childbirth which eventually led to four great births of my own and the founding of my life's work in the Active Birth Movement. Grantly Dick-Read's message is inspirational and even more relevant today than when this book was first published. Every pregnant mother should read it.'
Janet Balaskas - Author of New Active Birth
'Essential reading for anyone who wants to understand how birth education started as well as the vision that stimulated the birth movement. Dick-Read remains an inspiration for the humanisation of childbirth.'
Sheila Kitzinger - author
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BUT, he has written most of this in the 20s or 30s of last century! It's of historical but no other value to read about the reality he was trying to challenge. Nobody treats women so instrumentally as they were treated during Grantly Dick-Read times and there is lots of new fluffy things that might help you in labour, that he only could dream of, and we can choose from.
So read the book if you like to go to the original source (I loved it for those reasons) but if you are an expecting mother wanting hands on practical advice on how to birth naturally, you might be better of choosing more contemporary author.
All I can say is that I have had 3 drug free labours that I remember perfectly and experienced fully. I re read the book in the last month of each of my pregnancies and practised breathing techniques. My labours, while uncomfortable at points and hard work are not an unpleasant memory at all. I have given this book to 2 other pregnant friends who both had drug free, natural births too. BUY THIS BOOK.
One thing to note it was originally written in 1933. So though the overall notion of the book will be always relevant there are some thing that you need to look at from the perspective of that time.
Also would highly recommend to read Janet Balaskas ans Sheila Kitzinger after this to get a more modern and balanced view on active child birth.
Personally I not only had a natural childbirth but also enjoyed this amazing moments of welcoming my baby to the world thanks to these books.
If you are planning natural childbirth - these 2 books is enough to prepare you for the labour and inspire a confidence and strength.
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