Photograph of a drawing of Louise Bourgeois and another photograph of the front page of "Observations diverses sur la sterilité, perte de fruict, foecondité, accouchements, et maladies des femmes, & enfants nouveaux naiz" on a field of teal

Learn About Louise Bourgeois for Women’s History Month

Louise Bourgeois was the first woman to publish a book on obstetrics: Observations diverses sur la sterilité, perte de fruict, foecondité, accouchements, et maladies des femmes, & enfants nouveaux naiz.

Louise Bourgeois

Observations diverses sur la sterilité, perte de fruict, foecondité, accouchements, et maladies des femmes, & enfants nouveaux naiz

Originally published in 1609, the Medical History Center in Lane Library has an expanded 1626 version in which Bourgeois recounts the story of how she became the midwife to Marie de’ Medici, the Queen of France. Bourgeois published in French rather than Latin so that her work would be more widely read, and her writings were subsequently translated into German, Dutch, and English. To learn more about the Medical History Center’s resources on Louise Bourgeois and other women in the history of medicine, please contact the Historical Curator, Dr. Drew Bourn, at dbourn@stanford.edu.

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