By Peter C. Engelman
A background of the contraception flow in the United States tells the intense tale of a gaggle of reformers devoted to making birth control felony, available, and applicable. 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 essentially the most far-reaching social reform activities in American background. The booklet opens with a dialogue of the background of contraception equipment and the criminalization of birth control and abortion within the nineteenth century. Its middle, besides the fact that, is an exhilarating narrative of the crusade within the twentieth century, vividly recalling the arrests and indictments, banned courses, imprisonments, confiscations, medical institution raids, mass conferences, and court dramas that publicized the reason around the kingdom. realization 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 a suitable social and clinical perform. ultimately, the contraception circulation is associated with court-won privateness protections and the present-day stream 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)
While in Paris in 1900 to attend the International Revolutionary Congress of the Working People, an anarchist meeting set to coincide with the Paris Exposition, she learned about an underground meeting of neo-Malthusians. The French suppressed the anarchist congress, but Goldman was able to sit in on the ﬁrst International Conference of Neo-Malthusians, attended by about a dozen delegates from England, Holland, Germany, and France. She heard Charles Robert Drysdale, the president of England’s Malthusian League, and others speak on the beneﬁts of small families and demonstrate various preventive methods.
Agrarian communities especially relied on large families to run farms and preserve them for the next generation. Even so, fertility rates gradually began to decline. After several hundred years of relatively stable birth rates, the United States experienced a demographic transition from larger to smaller families that began around 1800 and lasted until World War II. The fertility rate dropped an astounding 50 percent from 1800 to 1900, from slightly more than seven to about three-and-ahalf children per couple.
Making his living as a shipping clerk and then a dry-goods salesman in New York City, Comstock became obsessed with snuﬃng out pornography dealers large and small. His vigilante work led him into an association with the New York Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA). With backing from a number of wealthy and inﬂuential businessmen, the YMCA formed the Committee for the Suppression of Vice in 1872 and named Comstock as its chief special agent. In 1873, he went to Washington to lobby Congress for stronger federal antiobscenity laws, which contained a number of loopholes and were enforced only sporadically.
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