Frederick Leboyer

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Frederick Leboyer (born November 1, 1918) is a French obstetrician and author. He is best known for his 1975 book, Birth Without Violence, which popularized gentle birthing techniques, in particular, the practice of immersing newborn infants in a small tub of warm water — known as a "Leboyer bath" — to help ease the transition from the womb to the outside world. He also advocated that a newborn be laid on its mother's stomach and allowed to bond, instead of being taken away for tests.

Leboyer graduated from the University of Paris School of Medicine. His own birth was traumatic and without anesthetics available, his mother had to be pinned down. Leboyer attributes his interest in birth to this experience. Leboyer is often mistaken as a proponent for water births. Although Leboyer's disciple, Michel Odent, is an enthusiastic supporter of water births, Leboyer himself is against the idea.[1]

Making love is the sovereign remedy for anguish.
— Frédérick Leboyer, in Birth Without Violence (1975), p. 62


  • Birth Without Violence (1975)
  • Loving Hands: The Traditional Art of Baby Massage (1976)
  • Inner Beauty, Inner Light (1978)
  • Si l'enfantement m'était conté (1996)
  • Birth Without Violence (DVD, re-released 2008 through New Earth Records)

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