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Childbirth as Politics

  • Where: Václav Havel Library, Ostrovní 13, Prague 110 00
  • When: April 6, 2023, 19:00 – 21:00

“It begins with childbirth” is how midwife Ivana Königsmarková, a tireless campaigner for dignified conditions for childbirth in the Czech maternity system, comments on often significant events in the social and political spheres. Why is childbirth a political matter, and who is responsible for that? How do we give birth and what does it all mean? Why, among other medical fields, is the Czech maternity system most backwards in comparison with Western European practice? Does violence occur during births? Who can and should conduct natural births? Do either old wives’ or doctors’ superstitions exist in the midwifery field? And who is a radical?

Ivana Königsmarková’s book Porodem to začíná (It Begins With Childbirth), issued in 2022 by the Divočina publishing house headed by Gabriela Kontra, is the spark for this debate, involving the author herself, lawyer Adéla Hořejší and Magdaléna Ezrová, president of the Czech Union of Midwives.

Chaired by Tereza Reichová.


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