Join us at Uptown Oakland's revived picture pizza pub for the only East Bay showing of the feature-length documentary about the revolutionaries who made child-birth a joyful spiritual process embedded in community.
BIRTH STORY: INA MAY GASKIN & THE FARM MIDWIVES (2012) tells the story of intentional community founder, natural birth teacher, and author Ina May Gaskin and her spirited friends, who began delivering each other's babies in 1970, on a caravan of hippie school buses, headed to a patch of rural Tennessee land. The women taught themselves midwifery from the ground up, and, with their families, founded an entirely communal, agricultural society called The Farm. They grew their own food, built their own houses, published their own books, and, as word of their social experiment spread, created a model of care for women and babies that changed a generation's approach to childbirth.
“Courtly and bespectacled... Ina May Gaskin doesn’t look like a rebel; she looks like an aging-hippie Betsy Ross. But 40 years ago, on a commune in Tennessee, she spearheaded the counterculture of modern midwives, who’ve become an increasing presence as U.S. cesarean rates have skyrocketed.” - Entertainment Weekly
While the movie focuses on the midwifery aspects and society's challenges practicing natural childbirth, we think it's a fascinating story illustrating the power of community. Former Farm'ers have enriched the Bay Area and EBCOHO. Cohousing Coaches Betsy and Raines have visited The Farm and interviewed Ina May's husband Stephen Gaskin. Co-founder/Ecovillage Training Center Director Albert Bates came out to visit and show another Farm documentary-in-progress two years ago. The Farm of today is featured in the new movie Within Reach, which we will work on scheduling for a future showing.
The 95-minute unrated film shows at 7:15, but get there early for the best seats -- we'll try to nail down a couch or two up front by 7pm, although there's no guarantee - but it's worth it for introductions beforehand and time to order dinner. We'll order the first pizza to share (supporting EBCOHO members get first dibs -- feel free to upgrade your membership on the spot!). If you like you can contribute to a full community dinner on a pay-it-forward basis, or order your own drinks from the New Parkway's sumptuous menu (PDF) - that's up to you. Afterwards, let's plan to hang out for conversation - there's a lounge in the lobby downstairs.
Here's what Farm co-founder and EBCOHO member Sandy McCoy had to say about her experience: "A truly remarkable story and one we can all learn a lot from. The Farm never was about being some sort of an isolated hippie utopia turning its back on society. It is about learning how to embrace and live within the community, both locally and globally, and work together to make our world a better place for everyone. It is about learning to take responsibility for our own lives, face new realities, work hard, have fun, be flexible, try new things, and be willing to change as the world around us changes, while still maintaining and nurturing our spiritual ideals." More comments here.
Inspiration Guaranteed -- See you there!
UPDATE: All of our pre-bought tickets are allocated, but you are welcome to come buy a ticket at the door if they are available and join us.