AFTERSHOCK (SXSW 2022) – Review by Valerie Kalfrin

Aftershock takes viewers through an abbreviated history of gynecology, with racism intrinsic in examinations of and procedures on black slaves, and reveals astonishing statistics. Nationwide, C-sections have grown from about 6% in 1970 to 32% in 2019. Black mothers’ mortality rates likewise have grown, doubling from 22% in 1995 to 44% in 2019. Part of the problem is the industrialization of medicine—it’s quicker to perform a Cesarean section than a vaginal delivery but also more lucrative for hospitals, which can receive a greater insurance payout for this surgery, the film notes.

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