Download A History of the Birth Control Movement in America (Healing by Peter C. Engelman PDF

By Peter C. Engelman

A heritage of the contraception move in the USA tells the intense tale of a bunch of reformers devoted to making birth control felony, obtainable, and appropriate. The engrossing story info how Margaret Sanger's crusade starting in 1914 to problem anti-obscenity legislation criminalizing the distribution of contraceptive details grew into the most far-reaching social reform pursuits in American heritage. The ebook opens with a dialogue of the background of contraception tools and the criminalization of birth control and abortion within the nineteenth century. Its center, even if, is an exhilarating narrative of the crusade within the twentieth century, vividly recalling the arrests and indictments, banned guides, imprisonments, confiscations, medical institution raids, mass conferences, and court docket dramas that publicized the reason around the state. cognizance is paid to the movement's thorny alliances with drugs and eugenics and particularly to its luck in precipitating a profound shift in sexual attitudes that grew to become using birth control into an appropriate social and scientific perform. eventually, the contraception flow is associated with court-won privateness protections and the present-day flow for reproductive rights.

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Extra resources for A History of the Birth Control Movement in America (Healing Society: Disease, Medicine, and History)

Sample text

Police took her in routinely and suppressed her meetings and rallies, sometimes before she had uttered a word. Goldman’s defense of direct action tactics and her association with the terrorist acts of other anarchists had established her notoriety as a dangerous woman, making her public presence alone objectionable to authorities. Charges filed against her seldom stuck. The excitement and press coverage surrounding her arrests bolstered support for free speech rights and organizations in a number of the cities that she visited.

Craddock’s suicide did spark a backlash against Comstock, not unlike Madame Restell’s death over 20 years before, and focused greater attention on the right of free speech. Harman, Foote, and the other radicals who helped coordinate the FSL understood that in creating a debate over free speech they could appeal to a broader public who might be willing to support civil liberties even if they objected to certain other radical ideas. Harman wrote just a few months before Craddock’s death that “even among those who will not so much listen to our more extreme views,” some “will respond to the plea for free speech.

In the years since it first appeared, the book had been joined by an array of sex guides and hygiene books. Itinerant sex educators (both male and female) crisscrossed antebellum America speaking on issues related to fertility and sexual health, dispensed birth control advice, and peddled their publications. Some were charlatans; many were legitimate doctors selling their own wares or publications. Frederick Hollick, a young English-born physician, filled lecture halls with talks on sexual diseases, sexual functioning, and ways to avoid conception by following a safe-period method—charting when a woman was most likely to conceive according to the date of her ovulation.

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