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Maternity tales: listening to birth spaces past and present
As part of the Being Human Festival 2016, themed 'Hope and Fear', you are invited to enter the Maternity Tales Listening Booth, an interactive installation that allows you to explore the history of buildings, spaces and instruments used for English maternity. Placed in Newcastle’s RVI Maternity Ward and Laing Art Gallery, the booth's drawers contain a spatial history of childbirth, with visual and audio accounts of homes and midwives in the 18th century and lying-in hospitals run by man-midwives in the 19th century. Despite the long history of lying-in institutions, it was not until 1945 that most women gave birth in hospital. Visitors to the booth are invited to fill in questionnaire cards or make audio recordings of their own experiences of maternity spaces.
Find us at RVI Hospital, Maternity Ward on Thursday 24th November 10.30–12 and 2.00–4.00pm (this date/place is for maternity users and their relatives only). The ticket you book can be used at any time in the 2 hour booking slot.
Find us at the Laing Art Gallery on Friday 25th November 10.30–12 and 2.00–4.00pm (open to all). The ticket you book can be used at any time in the 2 hour booking slot.
Please note that although this is suitable for all, some viewers may find some childbirth descriptions challenging. Children must be accompanied.
This event is part of the Being Human festival - the UK’s only national festival of the humanities. As our festival events are free, not everyone who asks for tickets come to our events. To make sure we have a full house, we allocate more tickets than there are seats. We do our best to get the numbers right, but unfortunately we occasionally have to disappoint people. Admission is on a first-come-first- served basis; the ticket you book can be used at any time in the 2 hour booking slot.