Despite it’s booming economy, India in the 21st century still remains one of the most high-risk places in the world to give birth to a child. 67 percent of the country is rural, and doctors are unwilling to serve in the areas. This has created a paucity of health professionals in the villages. In August 2012, when I heard that one of my distant relatives had given birth to a child at home in her village without medical supervision, I felt compelled to travel to West Bengal to try and understand this and other rural birth stories. Why did these...
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