This is the first book to unpack the legal and ethical issues surrounding unauthorised intimate examinations during labour. The book uses feminist, socio-legal and philosophical tools to explore the issues of power, vulnerability and autonomy. The collection challenges the perception that the law adequately addresses different manifestations of unauthorised medical touch through the lens of women's experiences of unauthorised vaginal examinations during labour. The book unearths several broader themes that are of huge significance to lawyers and healthcare professionals such as the legal status of women and their bodies.
The book raises questions about women's experiences during childbirth in hospital settings. It explores the status of women's bodies during labour and childbirth where too easily they become objectified, and it raises important issues around consent. The book highlights links to the law on sexual offences and women's loss of power under the medical gaze.
Women's Birthing Bodies and the Law includes contributions from leading feminist philosophers, healthcare professionals, and academics in healthcare and law, and offers pioneering analysis relevant to lawyers and healthcare professionals with an interest in medical law and ethics; feminist theory; criminal law; tort law; and human rights law.