Towards a “maternal commons”? Exploring the potential political resistance of televisual birth

SaraDeBenedictisBy Sara De Benedictis

On the 10th March 2014 artist Sheona Beaumont gave birth to her second child, Dylan, on the BAFTA winning Channel 4 primetime television show, One Born Every Minute. Beaumont invited people to comment and engage in the viewing of her birth through social networks, such as Twitter and Facebook, during the show. The experience of giving birth on television and the reactions to her birth depiction will feed into her next artwork.

As Imogen Tyler and Lisa Baraitser (2013) argue in Private View, Public Birth, in the past three decades in Western culture we have seen a dramatic rise in the visibility of childbirth. This is somewhat peculiar considering the abject qualities historically associated with the birthing body. However, as they go on to suggest (drawing on Hannah Arendt) the increased presence and focus of birth, especially within artistic sites such as Birth Read more...