Fetal Death Quotes

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Remarkably, the fetal brain generates far more neurons than are found in the adult. Why? During late fetal development, there is a dramatic competition in much of the brain, with winning neurons being the ones that migrate to the correct location and maximize synaptic connections to other neurons. And neurons that don’t make the grade? They undergo “programmed cell death”—genes are activated that cause them to shrivel and die, their materials then recycled.
Robert M. Sapolsky (Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst)
Savich stood over the metal parcel cage he’d been told was called an OTR, looked at the boxes scattered around it on the floor, streaked and smudged with blood like abstract paintings. Only the packages beneath the body had kept the blood from dripping out of the OTR. He looked down to see the body of an older man with a circle of gray hair around his head. He was torqued into a tight fetal position—difficult because he was heavy—his arms pulled between his legs. No deputy’s uniform. He wore a long-sleeved flannel shirt, old jeans, and ancient brown boots. Impossible to tell what sort of man he’d been—if he’d enjoyed jokes, if he’d loved his family, if he’d been honorable—that was all wiped away, gone in an instant, when the Athame was stuck into his heart. There had to be people out there already worrying about Kane Lewis, wondering where he was. They’d find out soon enough. Savich imagined he’d been a pleasant-looking man, but not in death. No, not in death.
Catherine Coulter
The epic that is brain development involves not just growth, but death. During gestation, the fetal brain grows about twice as many neurons as it will eventually need. This surplus of juvenile neurons is culled and winnowed to what the maturing brain needs; the misfits that aren’t picked to stay on the squad, so to speak, simply wither and die.
Rahul Jandial (Life Lessons From A Brain Surgeon: Practical Strategies for Peak Health and Performance)
Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting ... Instead of seeing birth as an awakening from blank nonbeing and fetal incompletion into the child's fullness of being, and seeing maturity as a narrowing, impoverishing journey toward blank death, [Wordsworth's] ode proposes that a soul enters life forgetting its eternal being, can remember it throughout life only in intimations and moments of revelation, and will recall and rejoin it fully only in death.
Ursula K. Le Guin (No Time To Spare: Thinking About What Matters)
[God] tells the woman that she will now bring forth children in sorrow, and desire an unworthy, sometimes resentful man, who will in consequence lord her biological fate over her, permanently. What might this mean? It could just mean that God is a patriarchal tyrant, as politically motivated interpretations of the ancient story insist. I think it’s—merely descriptive. Merely. And here is why: As human beings evolved, the brains that eventually gave rise to self-consciousness expanded tremendously. This produced an evolutionary arms race between fetal head and female pelvis.56 The female graciously widened her hips, almost to the point where running would no longer be possible. The baby, for his part, allowed himself to be born more than a year early, compared to other mammals of his size, and evolved a semi-collapsible head.57 This was and is a painful adjustment for both. The essentially fetal baby is almost completely dependent on his mother for everything during that first year. The programmability of his massive brain means that he must be trained until he is eighteen (or thirty) before being pushed out of the nest. This is to say nothing of the woman’s consequential pain in childbirth, and high risk of death for mother and infant alike. This all means that women pay a high price for pregnancy and child-rearing, particularly in the early stages, and that one of the inevitable consequences is increased dependence upon the sometimes unreliable and always problematic good graces of men.
Jordan B. Peterson (12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos)
She thinks she’s fighting against lethargy. She does jumping jacks in the motel courtyard, calls her best friend in Juneau from the motel pay phone and anxiously tries to reminisce about their shitty high school band. They sing an old song together, and she feels almost normal. But increasingly she finds herself powerless to resist the warmth that spreads through her chest, the midday paralysis, the hunger for something slow and deep and unnameable. Some maid has drawn the blackout curtains. One light bulb dangles. The dark reminds Angie of packed earth, moisture. What she interprets as sprawling emotion is the Joshua tree. Here was its birth, in the sands of Black Rock Canyon. Here was its death, and its rebirth as a ghostly presence in the human. Couldn’t it perhaps Leap back into that older organism? The light bulb pulses in time with Angie’s headache. It acquires a fetal glow, otherworldly.
Joe Hill (The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2015 (The Best American Series))
Beginning with maternal, fetal, and infant malnutrition, it’s hardly surprising that the enslaved were more susceptible than free people to most infirmities, including crib death, infant mortality of all kinds (including infanticide), death in childbirth, and injuries and deterioration to the mother from repeated childbirth, along with typhoid, cholera, smallpox, tetanus, worms, pellagra, scurvy, beriberi, kwashiorkor, rickets, diphtheria, pneumonia, tuberculosis, dental-related ailments, dysentery, bloody flux, and other bowel complaints. The health conditions of the enslaved were aggravated by overwork, accidents, and work-related illnesses such as “green tobacco sickness,” today known as nicotine poisoning, which plagued tobacco workers.22 The heavy work regimes they endured wore down their bodies and aged them prematurely, with childbirth-related fatalities limiting women’s life spans even more than the men’s.
Ned Sublette (The American Slave Coast: A History of the Slave-Breeding Industry)
Eleven people have been killed as a result of violence targeted at abortion providers: four doctors, two clinic employees, a security guard, a police officer, a clinic escort, and two others. Anti-abortion extremists are considered a domestic terrorist threat by the U.S. Department of Justice. Yet violence is not the only threat to abortion clinics. In the past five years, politicians have passed more than 280 laws restricting access to abortion. In 2016, the Supreme Court struck down a Texas law that would have required every abortion clinic to have a surgical suite, and doctors to have admitting privileges at a local hospital in case of complications. For many clinics, these requirements were cost prohibitive and would have forced them to close. Also, since many abortion doctors fly in to do their work, they aren’t able to get admitting privileges at local hospitals. It is worth noting that less than 0.3 percent of women who have an abortion require hospitalization due to complications. In fact colonoscopies, liposuction, vasectomies…and childbirth—all of which are performed outside of surgical suites—have higher risks of death. In Indiana in 2016, Mike Pence signed a law to ban abortion based on fetal disability and required providers to give information about perinatal hospice—keeping the fetus in utero until it dies of natural causes. This same law required aborted fetuses to be cremated or given a formal burial even if the mother did not wish this to happen.
Jodi Picoult (A Spark of Light)
gestation. High-intensity levels can cause fetal death or malformations, especially of the brain and skull. These effects are not surprising, since the exposures also substantially elevate the animals’ body temperature. Lower intensities do not cause heating and have generally been found to produce no harmful effects. In any case, the levels of radio- or microwave exposure in these animal experiments are well above those to which most women are normally exposed. However, there are some occupations that involve exposure to microwaves or radio waves at intensities much higher than the communication frequencies in the air all around us. The power of electromagnetic radiation decreases exponentially with distance, which means that its intensity is considerably higher at the site of generation—on top of a radio tower, for instance—than even a short distance away. People who
Lise Eliot (What's Going on in There?: How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life)
It wasn’t until the 1980s that it occurred to Republicans that they could lock in the religious vote by attaching themselves to the anti-choice movement. They abandoned the argument that abortion was an individual right and reframed the debate as one of the protection of fetal rights. The culture already treated women like vessels whose life purpose was the creation and carriage of babies. By prioritizing the welfare of fetuses, Republicans had turned women into second-class citizens and expendable ones at that.
Katherine Dykstra (What Happened to Paula: An Unsolved Death and the Danger of American Girlhood: On the Death of an American Girl)
They found a large suitcase and just about managed to fit the woman inside in the fetal position. Looking at her cramped in there, still as a doll, Eddie knew he'd crossed a line that could never be uncrossed. Shit, he'd be lucky to ever sleep again.
Philip Elliott (Nobody Move (Angel City #1))
The timing of this effect of testosterone is crucial. If it comes too late in fetal development, the key neurons in the hypothalamus are already dead, and the brain is set on an irreversible female course. Other regulators of neuronal death may also have decisive behavioral effects, but none is as obvious as testosterone.
Samuel H. Barondes (Making Sense of People: Decoding the Mysteries of Personality (FT Press Science))