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Reproductive Rights

Dear Amy,

I am a college student writing a paper on the advancement of birth in the United States. Specifically I am looking at the political, social, and religious movements in the past that have tried to keep women from having access to birth control. Do you know of any good resources that I can use in my research? Thank you for your time. I really appreciate your site.

- Jessica

Dear Jessica,

Margaret Sanger, who was the real pioneer for legalizing birth control in this country, went on to found an organization that became Planned Parenthood Federation of America. Planned Parenthood of New York City, which was the original Planned Parenthood, is housed in the Margaret Sanger Center and has tons of resources on her life. They have an education department, which should be able to help you. Also, there is a biography of Sanger by Ellen Chesler called Woman of Valor.

There is another book I recommend you take a look at -- Dorothy Roberts’ Killing the Black Body. This book looks at the history of reproductive rights movement from the perspective of black women. It does a great job of talking about those who have opposed women's reproductive freedom, including the pill.

Barbara Seaman's book The Doctor's Case Against the Pill also does a good job of showing this contraceptives limitations. I hope those suggestions help.

Good luck.


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