Academic journal article Journal of Prenatal & Perinatal Psychology & Health

Queen Jin's Handbook of Pregnancy

Academic journal article Journal of Prenatal & Perinatal Psychology & Health

Queen Jin's Handbook of Pregnancy

Article excerpt

Queen Jin's Handbook of Pregnancy by Fred Jeremy Seligson (2002). Berkeley, CA: North Atlantic Books. 116 pages. ISBN: 1556434057.

Jeremy Seligson, a long-time member of APPPAH, was born in the nation's capital, studied international relations at the University of Southern California and won a J.D degree from Indiana University. Upon graduation in 1970 he served as a Peace Corps volunteer lawyer in the Ethiopian Ministry of Land Reform during the reign of Haile Sellasie II, the last Emperor of Ethiopia. In the 1970s he explored remote regions of Africa, Asia, and Europe, studied poetry in Japan and began teaching English at Hankuk University of Foreign Studies in Seoul, Korea.

A soft-spoken scholar, poet, and popular professor, Seligson has been fascinated with the ancient birth traditions of Asia. His last book, Oriental Birth Dreams (1990), was published in both English and Korean. At our International Congress in Washington, D.C. he presented a fictional Diary of the Buddha's mother, Maya, during her pregnancy-a favorite topic which will soon become a book in its own right.

Queen Jin's Handbook of Pregnancy, published in January, is a cultural treasure illuminating a high tradition of pregnancy and birth dating back to the 12th century B.C. Paradoxically, the illumination is needed as much in Asia as in the West. The timing of this book is surely auspicious as Western obstetrics, yet in its infancy, threatens to engulf all previous visions of pregnancy in cultures past and present everywhere in the world.

Based on three decades of living and teaching in Asia, and powerfully motivated by the adventure of two pregnancies with Young Im, his Korean wife, Seligson takes us on an enchanting journey through time where voices of oriental men and women speak to us of their daily lives and ideals for pregnancy and birth. Young Im and her ancestors teach us by their meditations and prayers, their letters, dreams (and dream interpretations), their foods, drinks and herbal formulas, their use of music and color, and in poems and proverbs. …

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