Midwife Means "With Woman": 'Call the Midwife' and the History of Abortion in England
in History, by Janet Mullany
It’s 1964 and things are changing in Poplar on Call the Midwife.
A dad actually asks to be at the, ah, interesting end of his child’s birth and is firmly put in his place, and more women want to give birth in hospitals. Hemlines are rising as Britain becomes a fashion powerhouse. Yet some things just don’t change. As now, an obsession with royal births rules (and if you really want to know, apparently bets are now at 1:2 that Meghan and Harry’s baby will be a girl, with the top name predicted to be Diana. Yes, British bookies do big business during royal pregnancies). And sadly, not every birth is joyfully anticipated, and many women, particularly poor women in an area like Poplar, have few options for help.
Dec 20, 2016, Rewire
by Gretchen Sisson
The end of 2016 marks the close of a century since the first silent film in the United States addressed abortion. In these past 100 years, film, television, and our popular culture have addressed abortion in evolving ways: from the pre-code films of the 1920s, to the exploitation films of the 1940s, to television plotlines in support of legal abortion in the 1960s, to the alternately stigmatizing and stigma-busting portrayals of the 1990s and early 21st century. The incorporation of abortion into onscreen storylines has been done for shock value, for sex educational purposes, for humor, for drama, and for horror. This presentation is not an exhaustive list of abortion stories in U.S. film and television (there are over 200 of them!), but it is meant to illustrate some of the notable examples, groundbreaking firsts, and trends that have emerged over time.
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When it comes to movies, babies are better for the box office
by Mary Kenny
Everyone seems to love Bridget Jones. The cinema was full - 98pc female - and the audience laughed, clapped and empathised with Bridget (the fabulous Renée Zellweger) and her zany antics. She drinks a bottle of vodka at a rock concert, falls on her face in the mud, and then falls into bed with a hunky stranger in his yurt.
Bumping into her ex at a christening party, she slugs back the wine and he slugs back the whiskey and the next thing they're deep into the four-poster bed, and, as one American critic so reticently puts it, "nature duly takes its course". What a lark!
And thus we have the very popular new movie Bridget Jones's Baby. But wait: why didn't producers Working Title consider a film called Bridget Jones's Abortion? Look at the facts. Bridget is 43; she's got a big job at a London TV channel; she carries around a dolphin-friendly female contraceptive indicating she wants to avoid a pregnancy; and she can't figure out who's the daddy.
And yet, in this whole scenario, the one word never, ever mentioned is "abortion". The more euphemistic allusion to "choice" isn't even brought up.
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Source: the Independent