"Nothing in her bags but two rags": Midwives, Nurses and Public Health Intervention in African American Communities in North Carolina, 1920-1950

UNCA Author/Contributor (non-UNCA co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Rachel Killian (Creator)
University of North Carolina Asheville (UNCA )
Web Site: http://library.unca.edu/
Alvis Dunn

Abstract: The period of 1920-40 in North Carolina saw some of the strictest regulation related to midwives in the South. Midwives had been a fundamental part of the birthing process for African American women from very early on in American history into the twentieth century. The progressive health department established in the early part of the century targeted midwives in order to reduce high infant and maternal mortality. The key part of their strategy was the implementation of instruction and supervision through public health nurses. Notably, many of these nurses were African American, and they approached midwife regulation and public health care in a way that addressed not only inadequate systems of care, but the entrenched racism that was present in most aspects of public health intervention.

Additional Information

Language: English
Date: 2017
health care ; North Carolina ; women ; African American ; midwives

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