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Home :: Archive :: 2010 :: October ::
Midwives in Shakespeare's Time
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 21.0397  Monday, 11 October 2010

[1]  From:      Alison Findlay <
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     Date:      October 4, 2010 4:10:10 PM EDT
     Subj:      RE: SHK 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time 

[2]  From:      William Godshalk <
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     Date:      October 4, 2010 4:14:18 PM EDT
     Subj:      RE: SHK 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time
 
[3]  From:      Evelyn Gajowski <
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     Date:      October 4, 2010 4:45:22 PM EDT
     Subj:      RE: SHK 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time
 

[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:         Alison Findlay <
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Date:         October 4, 2010 4:10:10 PM EDT
Subject: 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time
Comment:      RE: SHK 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time

>I should like to find out how women became OFFICIALLY midwives in 
Shakespeare's 
>time (official midwives were called upon to declare whether a woman was 
(or not) 
>a witch. Is there a book about that, or are there documents I could 
find -- where?
>
>Thank you for your help. I know this is not a literary question, but 
hope one of 
>the distinguished Shakespeareans of SHAKSPER knows what I should read.
>
>Anne Cuneo


Dear Anne

On midwives Doreen Evenden, Midwives of Seventeenth Century London 
(2000) gives a full account of training for the task of child delivery. 
Caroline Bicks, Midwiving Subjects in Shakespeare's England (2003) is a 
broader cultural study. In addition, Ashgate publishers have just 
brought out a fully edited text of The Birth of Mankind, edited by 
Elaine Hobby.
Hope these will be useful.

Alison

Alison Findlay
Professor of Renaissance Drama
Department of English & Creative Writing
Lancaster University

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:         William Godshalk <
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Date:         October 4, 2010 4:14:18 PM EDT
Subject: 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time
Comment:      RE: SHK 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time

I found the following after a minute of searching.

Midwiving Subjects in Shakespeare's England. By Caroline Bicks. 
Aldershot, UK: Ashgate, 2003. xii + 211 pages. by T Krier - 2005

Bill

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:         Evelyn Gajowski <
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Date:         October 4, 2010 4:45:22 PM EDT
Subject: 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time
Comment:      RE: SHK 21.0389  Midwives in Shakespeare's Time

For Anne Cuneo,

Diane Purkiss's book, The Witch in History: Early Modern and 20th-
Century Representations, makes reference to midwives, including their 
role as witch-hunters. Deborah Willis's book, Malelvolent Nurture: 
Witch-hunting and Maternal Power in Early Modern England, also makes 
reference to midwives.

All the best
Evelyn Gajowski
University of Nevada, Las Vegas



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