The Business of Being Born (A documentary; A movement)

The Business of Being Born (A documentary; A movement) 1If you haven't heard the buzz about The Business of Being Born, I wanted to take a few minutes to tell you about the newly released film that premiered at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival in New York City.

Created by Executive Producer Ricki Lake and Director Abby Epstein, the film promises to "make a compelling argument for more humanistic approaches to birth, challenging the ideals of our technocratic society which places absolute faith in machines and technology."

I recently had the pleasure of chatting with Epstein about her experience making the film.

Epstein began by saying that it was a "privilege" to be able to witness so many births, "It gave me a lot of confidence. It really inspired me and it really normalized the process for me. I can see why people want to deliver babies. It’s totally spiritual and amazing. You cry every time. It’s such a normal, natural process."

Epstein expressed gratitude that the film has been so widely received by the media, "the media has been unbelieveable. We have had really, really strong critical reviews."

The Business of Being Born (A documentary; A movement) 2She explained that the reaction from the vast majority of the medical community was disappointing, "it was really sad. Many of the physicians were very defensive and very threatened by the film. A lot of them felt personally attacked by the film, but there were also some who were very supportive."

Epstein reported that the majority of women who watched the film had a positive reaction. "Most women will watch the film, stand up, and say, 'I want all of my girlfriends to see this, I want my sister to see this, etc.'"

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If you watch the film and wonder, "What's the next step in reforming the medical system and making birthing better for moms?"...

You can follow Epstein's lead,"We’re going to run a bit of a movement through our website. For example, the laws make it really difficult for midwives right now. We'd like to advocate for midwifery-friendly and mother-friendly initiatives. We want better outcomes for women and their babies."

Epstein encourages moms to "Spread the word about the film. Join the community on our website. It’s high time to shake things up. Changes would help everybody."

The Business of Being Born will be available to rent via NetFlix on February 26. If you want to see it before then, you can see it in the theater (playing in select theaters), you can attend a community screening, or you can host a screening in your community.

The DVD will also be available for purchase at the end of March 2008. You can reserve an advance copy on the Business of Being Born website.

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3 comments on “The Business of Being Born (A documentary; A movement)”

  1. I am so thankful for the number of times I was able to witness a birth. It really IS such a wonderful experience. I will definitely rent this from Netflix (when my husband is not around - witnessing our three was enough for him!).

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