The bulk of the introduction is devoted to identifying the scope, themes, and objectives of the book, each section and chapter being described in brief. An assessment of current maternal and infant mortality rates in the United States is presented and the book’s geographic realm and historical context are isolated. The micro-level and macro-level components of maternity care used throughout as an analytic tool are defined, as are the various classifications of American midwives. The historiography of African American lay midwifery and the professionalization of midwifery is discussed.
Keywords: Maternal and infant mortality rate, African American lay midwifery, Micro-level, Macro-level, Professionalization of midwifery