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Durham e-Theses
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A qualitative study of the experience of pregnancy and childbirth in the north east of England

Simpson, Mandie (1995) A qualitative study of the experience of pregnancy and childbirth in the north east of England. Masters thesis, Durham University.



This thesis is an ethnography of two socio/economically differentiated groups of pregnant women living in the Co. Durham. It follows these women through the latter part of their pregnancies and until after the birth of their babies, exploring how they talked about their experiences of being pregnant and giving birth. This thesis starts from the pretext that the physical condition, and how it is handled, is socially constructed and explores how the women, from the two groups, talked differently about their experiences. This thesis argues that the socio/economic differences between the two groups had important implications upon how the women perceived and talked about their condition and their ante-natal health seeking behaviour. The ethnography illustrates however that there was a common theme used by both groups of women when talking about being pregnant and giving birth, the theme I have chosen to call the medical/pathological model. In this thesis I have explored why this particular theme might be so attractive to all the women concerned. Finally this thesis considers the ad hoc way the women used the various cultural themes in their talk about their experiences, taking a small step back from the content of the talk to look at how the women used the content in practice.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Award:Master of Arts
Thesis Date:1995
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:24 Oct 2012 15:14

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