Rebecca Simpson offers an alternative perspective on stillbirth and infant-loss, focussing on the writings of two eighteenth century midwives. This is one of a series of essays addressing miscarriage, prematurity, stillbirth and neonatal loss, published by The Polyphony to coincide with Baby Loss Awareness week, which runs 9-15 October every year.
Why remove the illustrations from a nineteenth century midwifery manual? What might this tell us about how researchers negotiate presence, absence and access in libraries, archives and collections? Rebecca Whiteley, Shreeve Fellow in the History of Medicine at the John Rylands Research Institute, University of Manchester, explores a material history of absence.