My Book All That Matters Out 20/02/15

I’ve been very busy tapping away over the past six months and this Friday 20th February sees the publication of my book: All That Matters, Women’s Rights in Childbirth.

Published as part of the Guardian Shorts series, it’s a short, sharp, shock of an ebook that distills a lot of what I feel passionate about in to 25,000 words.

According to my editor, this is what it’s all about:

Birth. It is, alongside death, the most universal of all human experiences. One way or another – whether we are parents, offspring or both – we are all affected by childbirth. But for an event so fundamental to all of us, it has a huge variety of cultural, medical, legal and social meanings. So complicated is the field, and so little discussed – especially compared to the immediate before and after of pregnancy and child-rearing – that the person whose body is on the line throughout, the mother-in-the-making, is often readily overlooked in place of other concerns.
 
Rebecca Schiller’s All That Matters: Women’s rights in childbirth shines a light on the subject in a whole new fashion, setting birth in context amid the struggle for reproductive rights across the world. Frank and forthright, it is full of both powerful argument and her own rich personal experiences as mother, doula, campaigner and researcher.
 
As a mirror to society, childbirth, the attitudes to it, practices around it and experiences of women going through it, reflect the progress that has been made in advancing women’s rights. This reflection also shows us that there’s still a long road ahead.
I’ve been lucky enough to have some great feedback already and you can check out doula and writer Maddie McMahon’s review here. Cristen Pascucci of the US organisation Improving Birth had this to say about it:
I would love to see All That Matters as required reading for all women and feminists, as well as care providers and policy makers. It is a peek into the impetus behind the movement exploding all over the world today towards safer, more rational, more compassionate care in childbirth. I can’t think of a more basic right for a woman than to decide how, where, and with whom she gives birth–and for that right to be respected without question–but I think most people would be shocked to know just how elusive that right is for most women. The issues Rebecca Schiller lays out here are universal and urgent. I urge anyone who cares about women to pay attention to this book.
Find out for yourself what’s happening to indigenous women in Australia, in birth rooms in London and courtrooms in Indiana on Friday. Only £1.99 with 10% of the profits going to Birthrights. Bargain! Link to follow…
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