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Johanna Schoen's Choice and Coercion: Birth Control, Sterilization, and PDF

By Johanna Schoen

ISBN-10: 0807829196

ISBN-13: 9780807829196

ISBN-10: 0807855855

ISBN-13: 9780807855850

In August 2003, North Carolina turned the 1st U.S. kingdom to provide restitution to sufferers of state-ordered sterilizations conducted by means of its eugenics software among 1929 and 1975. the choice used to be brought on mostly by way of a sequence of articles within the Winston-Salem Journal. those tales have been encouraged partially by means of the learn of Johanna Schoen, who was once granted designated entry to summaries of 7,500 case histories and the papers of the North Carolina Eugenics Board.

In this e-book, Schoen situates the state's reproductive politics in a countrywide and international context. Widening her concentration to incorporate contraception, sterilization, and abortion guidelines around the country, she demonstrates how every one technique for restricting undesirable pregnancies had the capability either to extend and to restrict women's reproductive offerings. Such courses overwhelmingly certain negative and nonwhite populations, but additionally they prolonged a degree of reproductive keep watch over to bad girls that was once formerly out of reach.

On a global point, the U.S. has inspired reproductive future health guidelines by way of, for instance, tying overseas reduction to the recipients' compliance with U.S. notions approximately relatives making plans. the supply of U.S.-funded relatives making plans relief has proved to be a double-edged sword, providing exceptional possibilities to negative girls whereas subjecting international sufferers to scientific experimentation that might be thought of unacceptable at home.

Drawing at the voices of future health and technological know-how pros, civic benefactors, and American ladies themselves, Schoen's research permits deeper understandings of the trendy welfare kingdom and the lives of women.

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Extra info for Choice and Coercion: Birth Control, Sterilization, and Abortion in Public Health and Welfare (Gender and American Culture)

Sample text

And the expansion of the welfare state in the 1950s and 1960s brought with it a significant increase in eugenic sterilizations and coercive family planning programs. Even the liberalization of the state’s abortion law was motivated in part by the hope that access to abortion would lead to a reduction in births among welfare recipients. ’’≤≥ The state seemed to acknowledge access to birth control, and later to sterilization and abortion, as basic citizenship rights. But these rights came with a responsibility: health and welfare o≈cials expected women to have children within marriage and to limit the number of children they bore according to their families’ financial means.

Her decision to sue the Eugenics Board was a strong sign of agency on her part, and it contributed to the abolition of the state sterilization program. But Scott lost her suit. She summarizes her experience: ‘‘I was powerless. I was powerless over my own body, my mind. ’’≤Ω Is Scott a hero of her own life? She does not think so. Agency and empowerment are not part of her memory and evaluation of her story. Like so many others, Scott’s is a story made up of multiple competing narratives, none of which we should privilege.

Gamble. (Courtesy of Countway Medical Library) two years. With the permission of state health o≈cers, Frances Pratt traveled from county to county seeking to convince local public health o≈cials to incorporate the distribution of contraceptive foam powder and sponges into their regular health department activities. Health o≈cials who agreed to cooperate made a request for funding to the State Board of Health, which in turn provided the money to inaugurate the program in that county. Health o≈cials received free supplies of foam powder and were asked to collect data on its acceptability and reliability.

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Choice and Coercion: Birth Control, Sterilization, and Abortion in Public Health and Welfare (Gender and American Culture) by Johanna Schoen


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