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The Radical Doula Guide: A Political Primer

4.47  ·  Rating details ·  72 ratings  ·  9 reviews

"In August 2012 I published The Radical Doula Guide, a 52 page political primer that addresses the political context of supporting people during pregnancy and childbirth.

The guide provides an introduction to full spectrum doula work—supporting people during all phases of pregnancy, including abortion, miscarriage, birth and adoption—as well as a d
Paperback, 1st, 40 pages
Published August 2012 by self-published
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Dec 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: black-feminism
After years of hearing about this and hearing people rave about it, i finally got my hands on a copy at Fed Up Fest. This crash course in radical doula activism/birthwork really gives people from all walks of life a lot of things to consider in terms of how to radicalize their birthwork practice. Not only does it cover several axises of oppression, it utilizes the personal narratives of self-identified radical birthworkers to discuss why they became doulas, what disparities they're hoping to add ...more
Jenna Walthour
Oct 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This lil primer covers BIG issues that all my other doula training books seemed to have missed. So glad to have found words for my misgivings with other hetero-normative, gender essentialist, "colorblind" readings. Highly recommend to doulas and future doulas. ...more
Feb 01, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Quick read but informative. Would have liked more about what a doula actually does but the discussion around barriers to medical care is very interesting.
A very quick read--both because it's quite brief and because of its accessible, friendly, but still thoughtful tone--The Radical Doula Guide would be an important supplement to any doula training. The length of this guide means it doesn't achieve much depth, but--as Perez establishes clearly--its aim is to raise questions and put a thought process into motion.

The takeaway is that doulas should be aware of and educated about the inequalities and histories that affect pregnant/birthing individuals
Jun 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A well-organized overview of political issues that are CRUCIAL to be aware of in doula work. It is relevant to those who are not considering this line of work as well as awareness of these issues is extremely important no matter who you are, especially if you live in the US. The list of resources (books) in the back of the Guide is invaluable. Thank you, Pérez!
Sep 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfic
An easy-to-understand, inclusive, and short introduction to diversity, privilege, and power issues relevant to providing full-spectrum pregnancy support. I bought a copy because it feels good to have this kind of book within easy reach on my shelf, even though I'm just now exploring an interest in birth activism. The sections on ability, size, and age gave me food for thought.

"Now I see a different group coming into this work. Young people without children but with a passion for health activism
Sep 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
I really appreciate this guide because it brings together several things I am passionate about: full spectrum doula support, social justice, and the radical element of doula work, which the author defines as "making our doula services accessible to those who wouldn't otherwise be able to access them." It provides an overview of the various political and social justice issues that are inextricable from pregnancy/birth work and serves as an excellent discussion-starter about these issues. I'd love ...more
Apr 25, 2015 rated it really liked it
Quick read, decent overview of the politics and ethics behind birthing and doula work. It could stand for an update; there are newer resources on trans pregnancy and parenting. I also could use more info on birth work with incarcerated people.
Oct 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
I published my review on the Bay Area Doula Project blog: ...more
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Miriam Zoila Pérez is an award-winning queer Cuban-American writer and activist.

Pérez is a freelance writer, and is the founder of Radical Doula, a blog that covers the intersections of birth activism and social justice from a doula’s perspective. Pérez’s writing has appeared in The New York Times, Colorlines, Splinter, The Nation, The American Prospect, MORE Magazine, Rewire.News and Talking Poi

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