Birth in Eight Cultures (Book)


This stunning sequel to Brigitte Jordan’s landmark Birth in Four Cultures brings together the work of fifteen reproductive anthropologists to address core cultural values and knowledge systems as revealed in contemporary birth practices in Brazil, Greece, Japan, Mexico, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Tanzania, and the United States. Six ethnographic chapters form the heart of the book, three of which are set up as dyads that compare two countries; each demonstrates the power of anthropology’s cross-cultural comparative method. An additional chapter with ethnographic vignettes gives readers a feel for what fieldwork is really like on the ground.

The eminently readable, theoretically rich chapters are enhanced by absorbing stories, photos, quotes, thought questions, and film suggestions that nudge the reader toward eureka flashes of understanding and render the book suitable for undergraduate and graduate audiences alike.

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Davis-Floyd, R. and M. Cheyney eds. (2019). Birth in Eight Cultures. Long Grove, Waveland Press, Inc.