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Birthing, corporality and care among the Guarani-Mbyá of southern Brazil

Parto, corporalidade e cuidado entre as Guarani-Mbyá do Brasil meridional

Abstract

In this paper I draw attention to the happening of childbirth among the Guarani-Mbyá women. I highlight the centrality of a care language in the act of birth and of being born supported by the production of human bodies and kin. From Yva deliveries’ stories I explore the connection between silences, bodies and human and non-human socialities by interweaving it with native modes of care and a critical analysis of the medicalization of birth derived from the relationship with the “Juruá (“white”) system”. I emphasize a non-reductive understanding of life and health in the translation of epistelomogies of care between indigenous and biomedical sociocosmologies. The data presented are results from a long-term ethnographic research carried out among guarani-mbyá collectives of the southern Brazil.

Keywords:
Delivery and Birth; Guarani-Mbyá; Epistemologies of care; Medicalisation of Birth; Corporeality

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