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Remarks on the Employment of Females as Practitioners in Midwifery. By a Physician.
Channing, Walter
Published by Cummings & Hilliard, Boston
Location of original: Countway Rare Books, Harvard University
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it has not been questioned; the idea that it was indelicate never seems to have occurred. That it is a sacrifice of feeling we cannot doubt, but it is a sacrifice to safety; and it is a sacrifice which has no evil influence, leaves no defect upon the character. This is a most important consideration, that the custom has had no effect to lessen the high standard of real female delicacy which has always existed among us. It is a fair test of the question. In no place perhaps in the world is this standard higher, in no place is the female character more pure and elevated, than in this; yet in no place probably is the employment of male accoucheurs more universal, in no place is the practice of midwifery more safe.
  Yet even separately from the practice of midwifery, it becomes absolutely necessary that these feelings should be subdued. For even the ordinary attendance of a physician in female complaints requires at least as great a sacrifice, I think greater, or at least it is more felt, than that in cases of midwifery. Yet this sacrifice they know to be necessary, there is no alternative; and what has ever been the evil which, has arisen from that familiar intercourse between the physician and his patient, which is so necessary to confidence on the part of the latter, and correct judgment on that of the former? But it is sufficiently obvious, if the employment of female practitioners becomes fashionable, that it will create a fastidious nicety of feeling, which will make it be thought indelicate to suffer the attendance of a physician in any of these complaints. A moment's reflec-

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