The Word Natural As It

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The word natural as it relates to childbirth and midwifery Etymology Documented use of the word natural begins as early as the 14th century in the French and English languages as naturel and in the Latin language as naturalis. (1) The meaning of the word natural is relative to the context it is used in, which is evident even in early descriptions. The meanings for the French, English, and Latin origins of the word natural include “by birth”, “of nature, conforming to nature”, “of one’s inborn character; hereditary” and “of the world of nature (especially as opposed to man)”. (1) It is important to note that the word nature was described during this time period as essentially being the essence or principle of life and the course things…show more content…
(5:173, 6:237, 7:484) One of the essential forces behind this shift was the belief that childbirth is a pathological event in need of intervention. (6:237, 8:301) The responsibility of birth also experienced a shift from belonging to the birthing woman to the physician, now making decisions due to medical necessity in managing labour and birth. (8:304) During this time, British obstetrician and author Grantly Dick-Read began voicing his concerns regarding the use of obstetrical and pharmacological intervention during childbirth. (9:145) Dick-Read was dedicated to the study and promotion of natural childbirth, a term he introduced in his 1933 publication of the same name. (9:145) The 1970s began a Canadian resurgence of midwifery, taking place as a movement dedicated to restoring birth as a natural event and to restoring control to the birthing woman. (6:237, 7:485) Natural childbirth holds an iconic status within midwifery context as an opposition to the medicalization of childbirth. (10:394) It is widely emphasized that women are capable and their bodies intended for pregnancy and birth. (6:236) Although it is held as being emblematic, there is not one universally accepted definition of natural childbirth. (6:241, 10:394, 11:1084, 12: 267) In colloquial discussion, natural birth has, over time, become narrowly associated with a birth free from pharmacological or other interventions. (6:241, 10:394) This concept
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