The Moral Property of Women: A History of Birth Control Politics in America

This book is a revised and updated version of historian Linda Gordon’s 1976 classic Woman’s Body, Woman’s Right. The new work is a comprehensive history of birth control and reproductive rights in the U.S. Gordon’s works from the premise that all developments in the area of birth control, even those that seem purely technological, are inherently political.

The Moral Property of Women asserts that access to birth control is a cornerstone to gender equality, and illuminates the many ways in which the widespread acceptance of birth control has involved a fundamental shift in sexual and family values.  Interesting detail on the title: it comes from a 1988 ruling by the French minister of health ordering the abortion drug RU-486 be placed on the market, declaring it “the moral property of women.” When it comes to great books for women to read in the realm of reproductive rights and the politics surrounding it, this book is a must.

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