“The normal disease”: Historical and political aspects of the medicalization of childbirth

Viviana Valeria Vallana Sala About the author


This article investigates the construction of medical knowledge and practice in gynecology and obstetrics. Specifically, it focuses on the transformations of social and medical meanings in the pregnant body that occurred since the end of the 19th century and during the 20th century, and which make possible the process of medicalization, pathologization and hospitalization of childbirth. Likewise, the effects that the technocratic medical model of care for the pregnancy / childbirth binomial has in terms of the experience of these processes in women are explored; concluding on the need to deepen the elements of the medical paradigm, the training of health professionals and the working conditions in the health sector that intervene in the problem of dehumanization of care.

Key words:
medicalization; pathologization; technocratic model of birth; dehumanization; pregnancy; childbirth

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