Godden, Judith: Crown Street Women’s Hospital: A History, 1893-1983

Judith Godden

Crown Street Women’s Hospital: A History, 1893-1983, Allen & Unwin, Sydney, 2017

Crown Street Women’s Hospital was the largest women’s hospital in NSW. Located in the heart of Surry Hills, it was a referral hospital for women throughout the State and a leading teaching centre for obstetricians and midwives … [A]n essential part of its role was caring for the poorest and most marginalised women in Sydney.

Crown Street became internationally famous after its success eliminating eclampsia, a major cause of maternal death. It was the centre of the thalidomide scandal and renowned for its care of newborn babies. From its first years, it sheltered homeless pregnant women; its later practices contributed to the grief of forced adoptions. It was where a stream of women went after botched illegal abortions. In its final years, its Birth Centre revolutionised birth practices in Australia …

The announcement of Crown Street’s closure resulted in public uproar and demonstrations in the streets. This comprehensive history reflects Sydney’s rich past, and reveals why Crown Street’s 90 years had such a powerful impact on so many. (blurb)

The book is reviewed for Honest History by John Myrtle. The Daily Telegraph‘s story on the book, with pictures.

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