This chapter examines the Party-state campaign for safe, hygienic midwifery practices and the constantly refigured, actively circulating set of stories about the dangerous nature of childbirth in China. It evaluates the impact of the training of new-style village midwives and the retraining of old-style midwives across rural China on maternal and infant mortality rates. It suggests that even after the 1950s, the skilled village midwife who delivered babies at home remained a respected figure, sanctioned by political authorities and relied upon by childbearing women.
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