Title

Women’s experiences of breech birth and disciplinary power

Author Identifier

Deborah Sundin

ORCID : 0000-0003-4477-9813

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Journal of Advanced Nursing

Volume

77

Issue

7

First Page

3116

Last Page

3131

PubMed ID

33759224

Publisher

Wiley

School

School of Nursing and Midwifery

RAS ID

35649

Funders

Australian Government Research Training Program

Comments

Morris, S., Geraghty, S., & Sundin, D. (2021). Women’s experiences of breech birth and disciplinary power. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 77(7), 3116-3131. https://doi.org/10.1111/jan.14832

Abstract

Aims: To explore women's experiences of breech pregnancy and birth to identify areas in practice for improvement. Design: A descriptive exploratory study was conducted involving 20 women who had experienced a breech birth between 2013 and 2018. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were audio recorded and transcribed. Transcripts were examined using a free-form ‘circling and parking’ style of analysis. Foucault's concepts of power/knowledge were utilized to describe existing power relations. Results: Women experienced varying degrees of disciplinary power throughout their experiences. Knowledge was used as a means of enforcing disciplinary power by some clinicians and by women to ‘arm’ themselves and ‘fight’ to regain what they perceived as a loss of power and autonomy. Midwives were seen as navigators of a restrictive, medicalized healthcare system. Conclusion: By better understanding the power dynamics which exist as well as the stages women go through when experiencing a breech presentation, there remains the potential to identify areas in practice which need improving, and aid clinicians in better supporting women through what can be a very difficult time.

DOI

10.1111/jan.14832

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