Craven in childbirth

The November 21 1931 edition of the Toronto Daily Star contained this rather startling article about women and childbirth.

It appears that Dr. John S. Fairbairn of St. Thomas’ Hospital in London believed that middle-class British women were unwilling to suffer during childbirth and did not believe that motherhood was a duty. This apparently made it their own fault that they died more often during the delivery process. (Dr. Fairbairn, needless to say, was male.)

A Google search for Dr. Fairbairn turned up this obituary for him; he passed away in 1944. The obituary listed his medical achievements and honours but did not mention his viewpoint on maternal suffering.

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