About Black Women Birthing Resistance

CALL FOR BIRTH STORIES!  Please visit the “Resistance Stories” Page to see our Call for Birth Stories.

 

Our Vision is to resist and transform a historical and contemporary legacy of trauma and violence of socially and state controlled birthing.

Our Mission is to document, honor and sustain the role of Black women, families and our traditions of birthing as legacies of survival and resistance against the attempted genocide of our communities.

We will gather birth stories that name the traumatic birthing incidences of Black women & lift up our resistance to the social control of Black women’s bodies by the birth industry in the South.  We will use these collective stories to build strategy and action towards responding to and transforming our birth experiences.  We seek to sustain our physical, emotional, spiritual, environmental well being and safety, and to honor the sacredness of our birthing traditions.

Over the span of the project we hope to gather stories within 5 Southern states (Alabama, South Carolina, Louisiana, Georgia & Mississippi) from doulas/midwives/ob-gyn’s/reproductive justice, healing and health justice advocates and organizers who are speaking to medical birthing incidences of abuse that highlight the subsequent targeting of Black women’s bodies.

Our work will provide a historical context for Black women’s birth experiences in the South; emboldening Black women to view their individual birth stories within a larger narrative, and to remove the guilt, anger, and shame resulting from traumatic birth experiences.  We want to honor all birth experiences of all Black bodies and genders and have chosen to focus on Black women bodies first to understand the medical industry’s initial entry point on our birthing traditions for the last 100 years.  By uplifting the impact and consequences of these historical practices we will then be able to draw a link to contemporary Black birthing experiences including l/b/g/t/i/q parents and people with developmental, physical, emotional and environmental disabilities.

The narratives will culminate into the cultural project and tour in Summer 2011 seeking to build cultural awareness and organizing response and strategy to incidences of violence and abuse by the birthing industry.  Through this cultural project, we will build political education, critical analysis and action against state by state legislation targeting Black birth workers and birthing traditions in the South.

Conceived and produced by Documentary Artists & Organizers Tamika Middleton & Cara Page (Bios below)

Tamika Middleton is a community organizer, doula, student, and mother.  She is passionate about and active in struggles that affect Black women’s lives.  As a board member and member of SPARK Reproductive Justice Now’s CORE, she fights for reproductive justice.  She is also passionate about birthing and healing, and as such is active with Kindred southern healing justice collective; a member of BLOCS (Building Locally to Organize for Community Safety), and performing member of the NALO Movement.  Tamika is a Master’s Candidate in Sociology at Georgia State University.  She is mother to future bboy and dj, 3 year old Amani, and  believes wholeheartedly in a radical parenting paradigm that challenges oppression within family structures.

Cara Page is the Coordinator of the Kindred Southern Healing Justice Collective (www.kindredhealingjustice.org) based in Atlanta, GA. As a Black feminist organizer, artist and healing arts practitioner living in the South, she works for queer liberation, reproductive justice, healing justice, environmental and economic justice.  She is founder and practitioner of Deeper Waters LLC, which uses story, reflection and visioning to create organizing strategies and leadership practices that intervene and transform trauma and violence in our communities, movements and lives.  She is passionate about critically unearthing the truth about involuntary exploitation and experimentation on Black and queer bodies in the South.

We would like to thank the Regeneration Fund of RSF Social Finance for providing us with the initial funding for this project. We would also like to thank Julia Wallace and Alexis Pauline Gumbs for their creative vision and technical support.  The project is currently housed at Kindred southern healing justice collective.


19 Responses to “About Black Women Birthing Resistance”

  1. Blessings to you both! May your passion inspire and assist your vision. I appreciate your mission immensely!

  2. beautiful, powerful, courageous, creative work. many thanks.

  3. awesome! what an incredible resource this will be. congratulations, you two, and thank you for doing this.

  4. LOVE this project. Best of luck, I look forward to following your progress!

  5. What a powerful and inspirational project! I wish you the best on this journey and will support you with all my heart!

  6. What an amazing resource! I feel honored to watch this unfolding of this vitally important work.

  7. Bravo ladies!

  8. Would like to read more. Very ineresting!!

  9. This is amazing and I am proud of you Warrior Women. You have my full support. Blessings!

  10. Encouraged by this information and compelled to move forward in my city Kansas City, Missouri

  11. This movement is much needed.my goal and passion is to support and inform sistahs of their birth options and rights, health, nutrition,recovery all that.I would love to help.count me in.

  12. I didn’t realize I was a part of a political revolution when I starting home birthing, but I am thankful for following the guidance within…congrat’s on all the work you are doing – the revolution is on!!!

  13. Thanks for highlighting the problem of birth violence in this violent culture. If we are going to birth a more just and responsible culture we must begin with the end to violence in the birth place. I am a midwife and worked for years in hospitals where I saw my work with protecting the mother, baby and their families in this, the most sacred of human rites and passages. I no longer work in the hospital as the situation has worsened and more difficult to accomplish a trauma less birth even when drugs are not used. Continue your work in exposing the truth about violence in the birthplace. Our people, people of African descent and other people of color are at highest risk.

  14. Am so glad you both are doing this work…so crucial!

  15. Congratulations and abundant blessings on your work. All the best,

    H. Spillers

  16. I just learned about this film: The Chicago Maternity Center Story
    (1976) http://www.kartemquin.com/films/the-chicago-maternity-center-story . And now I want to see it sooooooooooooooooooooooo bad.

    It also made me remember you folks, and your presentation @ SEWSA. How is the project coming along?

    • Hi Rae!

      The project is coming along beautifully! We are completing the curriculum now, and will be posting some updates soon, so please subscribe to the blog so you can know what’s coming!

      Tamika

  17. Exciting mindset, nevertheless I think it far more important to depend on your personal
    instincts in most of such situations.

  18. Hi! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a collection of volunteers
    and starting a new initiative in a community in the same niche.
    Your blog provided us beneficial information to work on.
    You have done a marvellous job!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

 
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 38 other followers

%d bloggers like this: