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Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way: Revised Edition Paperback – July 1, 1996

4.4 out of 5 stars 510 customer reviews

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  • Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way: Revised Edition
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Editorial Reviews


“Instead of distracting yourself from the birth process… you are fully mindful and wholly engaged during Bradley’s method of natural childbirth.”
-Natural Life magazine

“Robert Bradley put power in patients’ hands, reducing the number of Caesarean sections and episiotomies he performed and playing up natural ways of making childbirth less painful.”
“The Bradley Method’s simple objective, through relaxation, breathing, and visualization, is a birth free of the interventions frequently offered to women in the different stages of childbirth: fetal monitors, drug-induced labor, anesthesia, episiotomy, and Caesarean section. [Its] other defining feature, the husband’s active participation in the delivery, is critical to this overall goal of an intervention-free birth.”
-Mothering magazine

About the Author

Erick Ingraham's talent for drawing was encouraged by his parents and teachers starting in early childhood. His artistic mother helped him develop his appreciation of form, color, and detail in nature and art. His father brought out the practical side of his personality by explaining and showing how things work. In high school, he played both the baritone horn and the string bass, but art became his main focus once again at Kutztown State University. His favorite iflustrators include Arthur Rackham, Maxfield Parrish, Howard Pyle, N. C. wyeth, W. Heath Robinson, and Edmund Dulac.

He began calling himself an illustrator in 1974, When he received his first book contract, for Producing Your Own Power. His first children's book was Harry and Shellburt (Macmillan). Over the years he has produced ten more children's books, nine of which he illustrated for Morrow Junior Books. He has won several state awards selected by young readers, as well as an American Book Award for Porcupine Stew, and he is widely known for his work on Mary Calhoun's four beloved Henry the Cat books.

"I don't think I've ever had a stroke of genius. Maybe luck, but not genius. It's all been hard work. The brilliance comes in the writing. I am most interested in illustrating stories with strong plots. The concept should be positive and uplifting, and the setting should be wholesome, if not magical. I can tell by the second reading of a manuscript if it's going to work. I can't force that excitement. Once I find a manuscript I like, I look at it as a child would--I don't use adult skills to start the book. I get my ideas in very, very sketchy form, almost like doodling. The more time I spend on a book, the less childlike my perspective is, but I never lose that aspect, because I've already thought it all out in a childlike way.

Children's book illustrations must create a magical bridge between the fascination of the story and the actual text. I try not only to lure the child to the story for the first time but to bring the reader back again and again. I take what the text requires of me--my experience, my drawing skills-and weave it together. With clear understanding and compassion for the author's intent, I place my imagery within a realistic, well researched, and believable setting. Imagination, research, a well-thought-out arrangement, and attention to detail will continue to he integral parts of my work."

Erick Ingraham was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on December 23, 1950. He now lives in Southern New Hampshire.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Plume Book; Rev Sub edition (July 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0452276594
  • ISBN-13: 978-0452276598
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (510 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,822 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Katrina D. Mukherjee on October 22, 1999
Format: Paperback
My first child was born after we attended Lamaze classes. Nothing in that birth was as I 'planned' and everything I did not want to happen...happened. I was an observer of a process that did not feel related to me.
During my second pregnancy we bought this book and attended the Bradley classes. This birth was excellent and wonderful!! I delivered a 10lb 3oz. baby boy with absolutely NO interventions (IV, drugs, epesiotomy etc.) and LOVED every minute of it. It was MY birth!
This book and the associated classes made all the difference in the world!! This book is not meant for those looking for the 'middle ground'. Bradley childbirth is NOT the 'middle ground'. If you are looking for reassurrance, practical relaxation techniques and guidance for your coach AND you are planning for a natural, personal childbirth THEN this is the book for you!!
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Format: Paperback
I found this book extremely informative on Bradley technique but kind of scary when talking about alternatives and hospitals. After having two babies using medications, I was desperate to find another option. The book is extremely good about detailing the feelings you have during pregnancy and childbirth. Working on the birthing techniques with my husband was priceless and helped create a special bond between us. After having our third child without medication I have got to tell everyone how much better a drug free birthing experience can be! I only paniced once. I had praticed the pushing visualization so well it only took three pushes for our daughter to be born! The scary part can be avoided by skipping the information on Lamaze, hospitals, and doctors. It is out-dated and frightening. Move on to the excercises and have a wonderful birth experience!
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Format: Paperback
After having tried the Lamaze method and ending up with an epidural and feeling very "out of control" during my first delivery, I went in search of more information to help me through my second delivery. I happened upon this book at a garage sale and decided it was worth a gander.

While I agree with other reviewers that the book had some dated photos and information, this did not interfere with my personal purposes for buying the book.

Having gone through the process once, I was seeking a method which:

*informed me in detail about what my body was doing through the birthing process and how I could work "with it" (rather than "escape" from it)

*gave me natural alternatives for relaxation and bearing the pain (rather than "panting techniques," how to balance on a birthing ball, focusing on imaginary "special places," getting an epidural when I couldn't take it anymore, etc.)

*gave me exercises to prepare my body ahead of time for the physical demands of labor

*gave my husband information so he could be part of the process and feel confident in his ability to coach me through

Natural Childbirth the Bradley Way proved to be the book that would meet these needs. Putting this information to use during my second labor was amazing. I was able to use the relaxation techniques at home for as long as possible. My husband was able to correctly judge when to get me to the hospital. We were able to get through the transition stage, knowing what the signposts were and that I was "almost there." I was only at the hospital an hour before my son was born. I felt great afterwards without drugs and was more than ready to go home the next day.
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Format: Paperback
I want to start this review with a disclaimer: this review is not about the Bradley Method of Childbirth. I believe that the Bradley Method can be outstanding and I have seen it work really well for many mothers. I have no criticism for the method at all.

This book, however, is another story.

In the first place, this book is so extremely outdated that it is unusable in my opinion. It uses scare tactics to upset women about things that aren't even done any more - enemas? shaving? I mean, seriously? I haven't known anyone to do that in 20 years. Her medical information and her portrayal of what happens in hospital birth is completely from the 1970s. The pictures are badly done and cheesy as well. They are all from the 1970s and all of the women in the book are bizarrely naked - whether giving birth, exercising, or just sitting around.

Secondly, the book is incredibly defensive. Bradley is a good method - the author didn't have to be so hostile and defensive about the Method. Her vicious ongoing attacks on Lamaze are ridiculous - Lamaze childbirth is nothing like what she describes, not even remotely close. Why she devoted so much of her time in the book bashing Lamaze is beyond me. It was unneccesary, dishonest, and detracts from the book dramatically.

Thirdly, the over all tone of the book is very negative. After I first read this book [when I was pregnant with my first child], I felt terrified. I certainly did not feel empowered, which is what good childbirth education should do.

A personal complaint I have, which is a matter of opinion, is that I do not like the way she puts the male "coach" in complete control.
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