Gaye Demanuele and the politics of homebirth



This article begins with an account of former midwife Gaye Demanuele’s recent referral to the director of public prosecutions by the Victorian Coroner Peter White following the death of Caroline Lovell during a homebirth with Gaye and another midwife. It outlines the destruction of independent midwifery and homebirth in Australia while also highlighting the critical paradigm and power differences between independent midwives and the medical and media establishments. I argue that this is part of the story regarding the treatment of midwives like Gaye (and many others) in the legal system. I also defend the critical political importance of women’s right to choose how and with whom they give birth – a right enshrined in the law but regularly violated.  This article was published in New Matilda on June 10, 2016. You can read it here.

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Petra Bueskens | Mother, scholar, psychotherapist | Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Melbourne Daylesford