Telling Bodies Performing Birth: Everyday Narratives of Childbirth by Della Pollock | 9780231109147 | Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Telling Bodies Performing Birth: Everyday Narratives of Childbirth

Telling Bodies Performing Birth: Everyday Narratives of Childbirth

by Della Pollock
     
 

ISBN-10: 0231109148

ISBN-13: 9780231109147

Pub. Date: 07/07/1999

Publisher: Columbia University Press

"Birth stories," Della Pollock tells us, "are everywhere and nowhere," permeating and haunting our everyday lives. In this remarkable volume Pollock explores the myriad ways in which men and women recount the ritual performance of giving birth.

Many of these stories, Pollock observes, rise out of the depths of terror, flirting with disaster only to

Overview

"Birth stories," Della Pollock tells us, "are everywhere and nowhere," permeating and haunting our everyday lives. In this remarkable volume Pollock explores the myriad ways in which men and women recount the ritual performance of giving birth.

Many of these stories, Pollock observes, rise out of the depths of terror, flirting with disaster only to end with a profound sense of relief at what medical discourse calls a "good outcome." Others represent pain, make counterclaims on reproductive technologies, and suggest complex associations between maternity, sexuality, and body politics in the contemporary United States. Pollock retells stories about some of the injustices that structure giving and telling birth--finding there a reckoning with the unknown and unknowable.

Focusing on the performances of birth stories, Pollock writes an intimate ethnography: an account of listening "body to body" to stories that press the borders of cultural critique with virtuosity, possibility, desire, and risk. She draws on cultural criticism, performance studies, and narrative theory to unpack this long-ignored practice. Most striking, however, are the stories presented here: unsanctioned, bold, fragmentary, and often furtive, they both unnerve and inspire even as they realize and resist cultural norms.

-Della Pollock's writing seduces us into new realms of theory, experience and narrative until we cannot escape the importance of 'telling bodies, performing birth'. This is a big and beautiful book to be read by one and all.

-Elspeth Probyn -head of the Department of Gender Studies, University of Sydney -A strikingly original study of a compelling genre of personal experience narrative - the stories through which women make meaning out of birth. Telling Bodies Performing Birth is a gripping read that intellectually challenges and produces pleasure. -Dwight Conquergood -professor of performance studies, Northwestern University

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780231109147
Publisher:
Columbia University Press
Publication date:
07/07/1999
Series:
Popular Cultures, Everyday Lives Series
Pages:
352
Age Range:
18 Years

Table of Contents

One: Origins in Absence
Two: Narrative Rites
Three: Practicing Pain
Four: Secrets/Doubles


Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >