EsherDr. Raymond De Vries
birth by design

Birth By Design: Pregnancy, Maternity Care and Midwifery in North America and Europe

Through their comparative and multi-leveled analyses, the editors and contributors remind readers that while birth is a natural physiological phenomenon, our understandings of birth, the birthing process, and how and from whom mothers should receive maternity care are culturally based and are continually constructed and reconstructed. By re-focusing our attention on birth outcomes as women's experiences and the reproduction of societies and culture, the editors and contributors of Birth by Design do problematize all contexts of maternity care, and by doing so, challenge birthing mothers, caregivers, and policy makers in our thinking about the birthing process.. –Canadian Journal of Sociology Online (CJS Online), March - April 2002

pleasing birth

A Pleasing Birth: Midwives and Maternity Care in the Netherlands

"In this detailed and thoughtful study, De Vries does much more than introduce us to the peculiar maternity care system of the Netherlands; he forces us to reexamine our assumptions about the way health care systems are organized, and offers new, and revolutionary, ways to think about health care reform. This is sociological analysis at its best." —Charles L. Bosk, Ph.D., Professor of Sociology and Medical Ethics, University of Pennsylvania

Selected as a book "worth noting" by the Chronicle of Higher Education Click here to read


Making Midwives Legal: Childbirth, Medicine, and the Law


“The author presents a balanced report on the historical aspects of midwifery and brings the subject up-to-date with in-depth discussions of that practice in three prototypical jurisdictions with different degrees of regulation of midwives.” —Journal of the American Medical Association



the view

The View from Here: Bioethics and the Social Sciences

Book Description
Although the field of bioethics is about 40 years old, sociologists are only now beginning to explore the ramifications of its appearance and growth. The View from Here presents the best of this new work, exploring: the profession of bioethics and its role in discussions about the means and ends of the life sciences; how ordinary questions become "bioethical" questions and why some bioethical issues fail to attract the attention of bioethicists; variations in the manifestations of bioethics in different countries and health systems; the relationship between social science and bioethics and the effect of the rise of bioethics on the field of medical sociology. The rich understanding of bioethics offered by this volume makes it an essential text for medical sociologists, medical anthropologists, bioethicists, and to the increasingly large audience of those interested in the relationship between the social sciences and bioethics.