Sex and Suffering: Women's Health and a Women's Hospital
Sex and motherhood bring women great joy, but they may also bring sickness and suffering. This is a social history of women's health, seen through the work of Australia's oldest women's hospital - the Royal Women's Hospital at Melbourne. Drawing on an archive of patient records from the 1850s to the 1930s, Janet McCalman recreates the lives of patients and the daily work of the hospital. She follows the doctors, nurses and patients through times of growth and economic depression, through the grim history of criminal abortion, and through the inspiring story of medical science and surgery since the coming of anaesthesia. She tells the often shocking stories of women's desperation to regain control on their lives, and of medicine's struggle to comprehend and manage the mysteries of nature.
by : Janet McCalman