I first learned of the book "Origins: How The Nine Months Before Birth Shape The Rest Of Our Lives" from the Time magazine article, which was published this past September. (And I heard about the Time piece from Erica Jong's rant article in the Wall Street Journal on November 6. I think Erica needs a hobby. A peaceful one, like bedazzling.) I was intrigued. I finally got a chance to read the Time magazine piece tonight and found tidbits like this:
Much of what a pregnant woman encounters in her daily life — the air she breathes, the food and drink she consumes, the chemicals she's exposed to, even the emotions she feels — is shared in some fashion with her fetus. The fetus incorporates these offerings into its own body, makes them part of its flesh and blood.
Often it does something more: it treats these maternal contributions as information, biological postcards from the world outside. What a fetus is absorbing in utero is not Mozart's Magic Flute but the answers to questions much more critical to its survival: Will it be born into a world of abundance or scarcity? Will it be safe and protected, or will it face constant dangers and threats? Will it live a long, fruitful life or a short, harried one?