Yaz and Yasmin: An Unacceptable Level of Risk?

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Don’t feel bad if you missed last week’s headline news about the deaths of 23 young women from their birth control. It was a top story for CBC news and a few other Canadian sources, but it was barely a blip on the radar of most U.S. news outlets. Yaz and Yasmin, two similar new-generation […]

Of Menstruators and Manhole Covers

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Feminists of a certain age may recall debates about changing sexist language, and the ways feminists were once mocked for insisting on replacing sex-specific terms such as policeman with police officer, fireman with firefighter, stewardess with flight attendant and the so-called generic pronouns he and him with he or she, him or her or they […]

Is PMS Overblown? That’s What Research Shows

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If PMS is a myth, then what on earth can we blame for all the lady-rage? You may have seen the article in The Star or The Globe and Mail or The Atlantic about the recently published research review by a team of medical researchers who assert that “clear evidence for a specific premenstrual phase-related […]

Yes, There’s Even an App for THAT: Menstruation and the Quantified Self

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Do you have a cell phone? Do you use apps to do things you used to do with paper and pen? Chances are, you do. Maybe you even use an app to keep track of your period. A recent report by the Pew Internet and American Life Project found that more than 80 percent of […]

The Million-Dollar Diet

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I learned this week of a new twist on college fundraising. Perhaps I should say twisted fundraising, as this scheme at Stephens College, a private women’s college in Columbia, Mo., blends the worst of reality-TV concepts with conventional donations. In a conversation with an anonymous alumna, Stephens president Dianne Lynch acknowledged that her schedule doesn’t […]

The Leap from Younger Puberty to Fat-Shaming

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When the story that girls are reaching puberty earlier than ever began popping up everywhere this week, I did not doubt its veracity. It was no coincidence that I received an email from a friend yesterday, observing with mixed feelings that she had just purchased a first bra for her oldest daughter. Her daughter is […]

Covered: New Documentary on Women and Tattoos

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What does it mean to be a tattooed woman in a culture that objectifies your body? In the new documentary Covered, Beverly Yuen Thompson has created an innovative, personal, honest and feminist exploration of women tattooists and tattooed women. In a refreshing change from mainstream media’s coverage, the film talks very little about what individual […]

A Pill for Men–Still Five Years Away

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The Internet, especially the feminist blogosphere, is all abuzz this week with the promise of a new contraceptive pill for men within the next five years. But researchers always say a pill for men is just five years away, according to University of Washington medical professor John K. Amory. The spark of new hope stems […]

Where’d the Diaphragm Disappear To?

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Did you know that last year’s combined sales of Yaz and Yasmin, the most popular oral contraceptives in the U.S., totaled $1.64 billion? Did you know the drugs are also the target of 1,100 lawsuits for potentially fatal blood clots? Did you know that an estimated 50 women have died from taking those contraceptives? Despite such […]

How The Pill Gave Birth to the Women’s Health Movement

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Only a latter-day Rip Van Winkle could avoid knowing that this month marks the 50th anniversary of the FDA’s approval of Enovid, the world’s first birth control pill. Hundreds of newspaper and magazine articles have marked this anniversary. Many incorrectly credit the pill with giving birth to feminism. As Elaine Tyler May notes in the […]