Distributor:  Bullfrog Films
Length:  52 minutes
Date:  1993
Genre:  Expository
Language:  English
Grade level: 10-12, College, Adult
Color/BW:  Color
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Midwives...Lullabies...and Mother Earth

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Fascinating look at pioneering natural birth doctor, Michel Odent.

Midwives...Lullabies...and Mother Earth

'We know more about what determines the health of spinach than we do of people,' says Dr. Michel Odent, a pioneer of the natural birth movement. To Odent, health is the key to changing the values by which we lead our lives.

When Odent first began to practice medicine, a woman giving birth was treated as a critically ill patient rather than as a person experiencing a natural act. By designing intimate birthing rooms and giving mothers and midwives more status, Odent's work allows women to experience more fully the miracle of giving birth.

Odent has also studied the long-term health impact of his techniques. He has come to the conclusion that life-long health is greatly influenced by the mother during pregnancy and birth.

Indeed, medicine should shift its focus towards nurturing and the causes of good health rather than being preoccupied with the causes of disease. Odent believes that the answers are not only medical, but social and philosophical, and he encourages us to abandon our technological vision of medicine for one consistent with the balance of all life.

'A lovely production...The birth scenes are extraordinary...an interesting eye-opener for many health professionals and a morale booster for midwives...an enjoyable viewing experience for anyone who shares the subject's enthusiasm and affection for babies, mothers, and the miracle of birth.' ***** Video Rating Guide for Libraries

'This brave documentary casts childbirth in cultural terms...The ideas are appealing, and the presentation is artful and careful...the concepts will be of high interest to expectant parents and students of sociology and women's studies.' Wilson Library Bulletin

'Nicely edited, this program explores an option to a hospital delivery.' Booklist

'This video shows how respected and common practices surrounding birth have a damaging effect and shows ways to alter practices. Viewers will see the importance of a distinction between use and overuse of medical routines and look beyond the technology, into deeper human values.' Journal of Human Lactation


Silver Apple, National Educational Film and Video Festival


Main credits

Gailey, Tony (filmmaker)
Russell, Julian (filmmaker)
Kalya, Julie (narrator)

Other credits

Edited by Suresh Ayyar & Lindsay Fraser; music, Nikolas & Rachel Zinman-Jeanes.

Distributor credits

220 Productions

Julian Russell and Tony Gailey

220 Productions
Julian Russell and Tony Gailey

Docuseek2 subjects

Women's History
Women's Studies
Maternal and Child Health
Reproductive Rights
Social Psychology
Medical Ethics
History of Medicine

Distributor subjects

Reproductive Rights
Social Psychology
Women's Studies


childbirth; "Midwives...Lullabies...and Mother Earth"; Bullfrog Films

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