Reproductive Rights Prof Blog

Editor: Caitlin E. Borgmann
CUNY School of Law

A Member of the Law Professor Blogs Network

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Justice Ginsburg Frustrated by Court's Failure To Advance Women's Rights

The New York Times:  Justices’ Rulings Advance Gays; Women Less So, by Adam Liptak:

When Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg reflects on the Supreme Court’s recent rulings, she sees an inconsistency.

In its gay rights rulings, she told a law school audience last week, the court uses the soaring language of “equal dignity” and has endorsed the fundamental values of “liberty and equality.” Indeed, a court that just three decades ago allowed criminal prosecutions for gay sex now speaks with sympathy for gay families and seems on the cusp of embracing a constitutional right to same-sex marriage.

But in cases involving gender, she said, the court has never fully embraced “the ability of women to decide for themselves what their destiny will be.” She said the court’s five-justice conservative majority, all men, did not understand the challenges women face in achieving authentic equality. . . .

August 5, 2014 in Supreme Court, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Radical Feminists and Transgender Rights

The New Yorker: What is a Woman?, by Michelle Goldberg:

The dispute between radical feminism and transgenderism.

O May 24th, a few dozen people gathered in a conference room at the Central Library, a century-old Georgian Revival building in downtown Portland, Oregon, for an event called Radfems Respond. The conference had been convened by a group that wanted to defend two positions that have made radical feminism anathema to much of the left. First, the organizers hoped to refute charges that the desire to ban prostitution implies hostility toward prostitutes. Then they were going to try to explain why, at a time when transgender rights are ascendant, radical feminists insist on regarding transgender women as men, who should not be allowed to use women’s facilities, such as public rest rooms, or to participate in events organized exclusively for women. . . .

August 5, 2014 in Culture, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, June 30, 2014

Hobby Lobby Majority, in Contrast to Justice Ginsburg, Largely Ignores Women and Their Well-Being

The Washington Post - WonkBlog: The 49-page Supreme Court Hobby Lobby ruling mentioned women just 13 times, by Emily Badger:

. . . Th[e] idea — that women's reproductive well-being is vital to both their personal prospects and the country's fortunes — runs throughout Ginsburg's dissent. It is notably absent from Justice Samuel Alito's majority opinion. . . .

 

June 30, 2014 in Contraception, Supreme Court, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, July 22, 2013

Studies in Law, Politics, and Society - Call for Abstracts on “Problematizing Prostitution”

Call for Abstracts for Special Issue of Studies in Law, Politics, and Society: "Problematizing Prostitution: Critical Research and Scholarship":

Deadline August 15, 2013

We invite submissions from scholars contributing to the literature in the field of prostitution or sex work. Please submit your abstract for consideration for a special issue of Studies in Law, Politics, and Society entitled “Problematizing prostitution: Critical research and scholarship.”

For this special edition, we seek research and scholarship that problematizes the prevailing understanding about sex work and prostitution. Ideally, the scholars who contribute to this issue will utilize diverse research methods to examine the lived experiences of people engaged in prostitution and the people and institutions that process them. Such critical research might examine the production of knowledge about prostitution by institutional stakeholders or how legal responses to prostitution and trafficking are affected by class, race, ethnicity, and migration. Other possible topics include critiques of a pathology-based focus in scholarship, policy, and practice; reexamination of the feminist pro-sex/abolition divide; critical reexamination of the historical theories and practices of prostitution; ethical concerns around research with people engaged in prostitution; problematizing victim-framing and conceptions of agency; challenging prostitution typologies; new configurations of sex, gender, and prostitution; and the influence of trafficking discourses on our analysis of prostitution and responses to prostitution.

We seek manuscripts that contribute innovations and challenges to prevailing prostitution theory, research, and ethics. Manuscripts that consider different types of prostitution and sex work as well as geographical variation are encouraged.

Please submit your abstracts to special issue organizers, Corey Shdaimah (cshdaimah@ssw.umaryland.edu) and Katie Hail-Jares (katie.jares@student.american.edu) by August 15th, 2013. After reviewing the abstracts, selected authors will be invited to submit an article for inclusion in the special edition by September 1st. More information about manuscript submission will be included in that invitation. Final submissions will be due February 1st, 2014. The journal and its editors retain final discretion about editorial and publication decisions.

For more information on Studies in Law, Politics, and Society see the homepage: http://www.emeraldinsight.com/products/books/series.htm?id=1059- 4337&PHPSESSID=vl01h74uvho5teclfslsuujai7

July 22, 2013 in Scholarship and Research, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, June 29, 2013

"Blame Game" Follows New York Legislature's Failure to Pass Women's Equality Agenda

YNN.com: Fallout from failure to pass Women's Equality Agenda, by Zack Fink:

The Legislature failed to pass Governor Andrew Cuomo's Women's Equality Agenda before last week's end of session. Zack Fink has more on the fallout and the blame game that's being played out between the Assembly and the State Senate.When Governor Cuomo's ten point women's equality agenda failed in the legislature, there was plenty of blame to go around. The Assembly majority blamed the State Senate for passing only nine of ten points and the Senate majority blamed the Assembly for passing all ten, including a controversial abortion provision that was dead on arrival in the Senate. . . .

June 29, 2013 in Abortion, Reproductive Health & Safety, State Legislatures, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Search for a Women's Libido Pill Raises Questions About Causes of Waning Female Sex Drive

The New York Times: Unexcited? There May Be a Pill for That, by Daniel Bergner:

Linneah sat at a desk at the Center for Sexual Medicine at Sheppard Pratt in the suburbs of Baltimore and filled out a questionnaire. She read briskly, making swift checks beside her selected answers, and when she was finished, she handed the pages across the desk to Martina Miller, who gave her a round of pills.

The pills were either a placebo or a new drug called Lybrido, created to stoke sexual desire in women. . . .

. . .“Female Viagra” is the way drugs like Lybrido and Lybridos tend to be discussed. But this is a misconception. Viagra meddles with the arteries; it causes physical shifts that allow the penis to rise. A female-desire drug would be something else. It would adjust the primal and executive regions of the brain. It would reach into the psyche. . . .

See also Jezebel: How a Women's Libido Pill Could Actually Save Monogamy, by Lindy West.

May 23, 2013 in Culture, Sexuality, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, May 6, 2013

Large Majority of Women Favor Over-the-Counter Birth Control Pill

Reuters (Health):  Most women back over-the-counter birth control pill, by Genevra Pittman:

Close to two-thirds of women favor making contraceptive pills available over the counter, according to a new nationally-representative survey.

In addition, about 30 percent of women using either no birth control or a less effective method - such as condoms - said they would likely take the Pill if it was sold without a prescription, researchers found. . . . 

May 6, 2013 in Contraception, Public Opinion, Reproductive Health & Safety, Scholarship and Research, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

International Women's Day: Women's Global Health Still at Risk

GlobeThe Huffington Post: International Women's Day 2013: 7 Sadly Disturbing Truths About Women's Bodies (HOW YOU CAN HELP), by Eleanor Goldberg:

On International Women’s Day, we have a number of groundbreaking accomplishments to celebrate. This year alone, women in the U.S. won the right to serve on the front lines in combat and President Obama inched closer to pushing for equal pay for men and women.

Global health for women has also seen some major boons, too. The number of mothers who die during childbirth has been reduced by almost 50 percent and HIV drug prices have fallen by more than 99 percent since 2000.

But we’re not done fighting yet. . . .

March 7, 2013 in International, Poverty, Pregnancy & Childbirth, Reproductive Health & Safety, Sexual Assault, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, February 28, 2013

House Approves Expanded Violence Against Women Act

CapitolThe New York Times: House Renews Violence Against Women Measure, by Ashley Parker:

The House on Thursday gave final approval to a renewal of the Violence Against Women Act, sending a bipartisan Senate measure to President Obama after a House plan endorsed by conservatives was defeated. . . .

The legislation’s approval underscored the divide in the Republican party as it struggles to regain its footing with women after its 2012 electoral drubbing among female voters. . . .

February 28, 2013 in Congress, Politics, Sexual Assault, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Feminist Legal Theory Conference (March 7-8, 2013)

University of Baltimore School of Law Center on Applied Feminism: Sixth Annual Feminist Legal Theory Conference, March 7-8, 2013:

Image1 Join the University of Baltimore School of Law, the University of Baltimore Law Review, and the Center on Applied Feminism for the sixth annual Feminist Legal Theory Conference. There is no charge to attend, but pre-registration is requested as seating is limited.   

RSVP here if you are interested in attending the full-day conference on Friday, March 8, 2013. Registrants for the full-day conference will be automatically registered for the keynote presentation.  

There is also a workshop session the afternoon of March 7, 2013, which you can register for here. For additional details about the conference, including accommodations and parking information, please visit our website.

February 16, 2013 in Conferences and Symposia, Law School, Scholarship and Research, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, February 8, 2013

Call for Submissions: NAWL Law Student Writing Competition

National Association of Women Lawyers: 2012-13 Selma Moidel Smith Law Student Writing Competition: 

The National Association of Women Lawyers (NAWL) is a national voluntary legal professional organization whose mission is the advancement of women in the legal profession and women’s rights. Since 1899, NAWL has served as an educational forum and active voice for the concerns of women lawyers in this country and abroad.  NAWL continues to support and advance the interests of women in and under the law, and in so doing, supports and advances the social, political, and professional empowerment of women. Through its programs and networks, NAWL provides the tools for women in the profession to advance, prosper and enrich the profession.  NAWL has established the annual Selma Moidel Smith Law Student Writing Competition to encourage and reward original law student writing on issues concerning women and the law. The rules for the competition are as follows:

Entrants should submit a paper on an issue concerning women’s rights or the status of women in the law.   The most recent winning paper was “All Things Being Equal, Women Lose. Investigating the Lack of Diversity Among the Recent Appointments to the Iowa Supreme Court” written by Abigail Rury, Michigan State University School of Law.

Essays will be accepted from students enrolled at any law school during the 2012-13 school year. The essays must be the law student author’s own work and must not have been submitted for publication elsewhere.  Papers written by students for coursework or independent study during the Summer, Fall or Spring semesters are eligible for submission.  Notwithstanding the foregoing, students may incorporate professorial feedback as part of a course requirement or supervised writing project.

FORMAT: Essays must be double-spaced in 12-point font, Times New Roman font type. All margins must be at least one inch. Entries must not exceed fifteen (15) pages of text, excluding notes, with footnotes placed as endnotes. Citation style should conform to The Bluebook – A Uniform System of Citation. Essays longer than 15 pages of text, excluding notes, or which are not in the required format may not be read.

JUDGING: NAWL Women Lawyers Journal® designees will judge the competition. Essays will be judged based upon content, exhaustiveness of research, originality, writing style, and timeliness.

QUESTIONS: Questions regarding this competition should be addressed to the chair of the Writing Competition, Professor Jennifer Martin atjmartin@stu.edu.

SUBMISSION AND DEADLINE: Entries must be received by May 1, 2013. Entries received after the deadline will be considered only at the discretion of NAWL. Entries must provide a cover letter providing the title of your essay, school affiliation, email address, phone number and mailing address.  Entries must be submitted in the following format: email an electronic version (in Microsoft Word or PDF format) tojmartin@stu.edu.

AWARD: The author of the winning essay will receive a cash prize of $500. NAWL will also publish the winning essay in NAWL’s Women Lawyers Journal in the summer of 2013.

February 8, 2013 in Law School, Scholarship and Research, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, January 24, 2013

At Sundance Film Festival, "After Tiller" Features Four Doctors Who Perform Third-Trimester Abortions

The Los Angeles Times: Sundance Film Festival: 'After Tiller' about abortion doctors, patients, by Mark Olsen:

The documentary about four doctors who perform third-trimester abortions was screened at the festival with heavy security. Filmmakers Martha Shane and Lana Wilson wanted to show audiences how much the doctors cared about and for their patients, and talked to the women too.

PARK CITY, Utah – The Sundance Film Festival has a relaxed, down-to-earth vibe, but the atmosphere at the premiere screening of the documentary "After Tiller" was noticeably tense. . . .

January 24, 2013 in Abortion, In the Media, Reproductive Health & Safety, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

New Mexico Bill Would Criminalize as "Tampering with Evidence" Abortions Caused By Rape

In case anyone was under the misconception that male Republicans were getting the message about abortion and rape:

The Huffington Post: New Mexico Bill Would Criminalize Abortions After Rape as 'Tampering With Evidence', by Laura Bassett:

A Republican lawmaker in New Mexico introduced a bill on Wednesday that would legally require victims of rape to carry their pregnancies to term in order to use the fetus as evidence for a sexual assault trial. . . .

January 24, 2013 in Abortion Bans, Sexual Assault, State Legislatures, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Sen. Patty Murray on House Republicans' Failure To Take Up Bill Reauthorizing Violence Against Women Act

CNN opinion: House GOP failed women on Violence Against Women Act, by Patty Murray:

(CNN) -- This week, just over 250 days since the U.S. Senate passed a bipartisan and inclusive bill to extend the landmark Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), the Republican leadership in the House of Representatives allowed the clock to run out on protections that bill would have provided to millions of women across our country. . . .

January 6, 2013 in Congress, Politics, Sexual Assault, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Call for Symposium Papers: "Gender Matters: Women, Social Policy and the 2012 Election"

Call for Symposium Papers

Gender Matters: Women, Social Policy and the 2012 Election 

April 2, 2013 at American University Washington College of Law, Washington, DC

The American University Journal of Gender, Social Policy & the Law and Women and the Law Program invite papers for a symposium on gender, social policy and the election of 2012. The organizers welcome papers that explore how current or proposed social polices affect the lives of women and their families, and/or that analyze what role, if any, rhetoric about those polices may have played in the recent election. Abstracts from professors or practitioners (sorry, no student pieces) addressing gender and health care, labor and employment, taxation, fiscal policy and social welfare or other relevant social policy are due by midnight January 7, 2013.  Papers selected will be presented at a symposium on April 2, 2013 at American University Washington College of Law, and strongly considered for publication.  To read the full Call for Papers and to submit an abstract online, please visit the symposium website. Please contact the organizers at gendersymposium2013@gmail.com with any questions.

November 20, 2012 in 2012 Presidential Campaign, Conferences and Symposia, Law School, Scholarship and Research, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Michele Bratcher Goodwin at the University of Utah: The New Reproductive Battlefront

Monday November 5, 12:15 p.m. MST
(2:15 p.m. EST, 11:15 a.m. PST)

Leary_Email_Goodwin1

Michele Bratcher Goodwin, the 47th Annual Leary Lecturer, is the Everett Fraser Professor in Law at the University of Minnesota. She holds joint appointments at the University of Minnesota Medical School and the University of Minnesota School of Public Health.

Women's reproduction dominates recent political platforms and debates. However, relatively little attention has focused on the criminal policing targeted at pregnant women across America. Since the late 1980s, state legislatures have enacted punitive feticide laws that ostensibly apply to a broad range of activities, including falling down steps, suffering drug addiction, refusing cesarean sections, and attempting suicide. Legislators and prosecutors from both political parties have decided that a very strong "stick" should be used against pregnant women. Indeed, despite the fact that early feticide laws were intended to protect women from third party harms to their pregnancies, such as domestic violence, because women are more likely to be the targets of domestic violence during their pregnancies, now fetal protection laws—in 38 states—lead to unreasonable arrests and senseless convictions of pregnant women. The scope of the problem is difficult to measure. Yet, what is clear from the legal cases and news reports is that most of the victims are poor and many are women of color. In this year’s Leary Lecture, Professor Goodwin examines the expanded use of criminal laws and civil commitments to shape new reproductive health norms. Watch Live Online >>.

Free and open to the public. No registration required. One hour CLE.
Call 801-585-3479 or visit law.utah.edu.

November 1, 2012 in Fetal Rights, Law School, Lectures and Workshops, Politics, Poverty, Pregnancy & Childbirth, Race & Reproduction, Scholarship and Research, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Reaction to Governor Romney's "Binder Full of Women"

The New Republic: Mitt the Jerk: a Woman’s View of the Debate, by Amy Sullivan:

BinderAt the risk of going all Maureen Dowd here, I’d like to suggest that in the second presidential debate on Tuesday night, we met Mitt the Man. He’s always been there, surfacing briefly at the Republican National Convention to implausibly claim that he has always believed wife Ann’s job raising their sons “was a lot more important than mine”—as if Romney sincerely believed that for decades he pursued a less important career path. . . .

CNN Opinion: Romney's empty 'binders full of women', by Maria Cardona:

Mitt Romney showed up Tuesday night talking about "binders full of women" being brought to him when he was governor. Sounds kind of kinky and certainly not something you want to be touting. . . . In fairness, "binders" was most likely a slip of the tongue. . . .

Even as a slip of the tongue, this odd phrase betrays Romney's true lack of understanding, knowledge and comfort level on women's equality. And besides the binders comment, there are several problems with the story Romney told Tuesday night.

First of all, it is not true. The "binder" of women's résumés was prepared before the election by the Massachusetts Government Appointments Project, a coalition of nonpartisan women's groups. When Romney won, the women -- not in binders -- gave him the résumés. . . .

The Washington Post (Blog): Why we need feminist theology: Romney and 'binders full of women' by, Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite:

Why did Mitt Romney’s reference to “whole binders full of women” in response to a question from a town hall attendee in Tuesday night’s second presidential debate at Hofstra University simply drive many women up the wall?

Romney’s seemingly off-hand remark sparked outrage. . . .

October 17, 2012 in 2012 Presidential Campaign, In the Media, Politics, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Women Favor Obama's Stance on Contraception and Abortion

Obama2The Hill - Healthwatch blog:  Poll:  Female voters give Obama edge on contraception, abortion, by Sam Baker:

President Obama's contraception mandate is helping him enormously with female voters, a new USA Today/Gallup poll says.

The survey found that Mitt Romney has made enormous gains with female voters — the candidates were tied among women who are likely to vote, and Obama had a nine-point lead among registered female voters. Concern over the economy has helped Romney erode what was once a sizable gender gap. . . .

October 17, 2012 in 2012 Presidential Campaign, Abortion, Contraception, Politics, President/Executive Branch, Public Opinion, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

New Study Reports on Abortion Rates by Age in Countries with Liberal Abortion Laws

Guttmacher Institute – press release: Survey of Countries with Liberal Abortion Laws Finds Abortions Concentrated Among Women in their 20s, by Jessica Malter:  Thumbnail

Decline in American Teen Abortion Rate Puts United States on Par With Some Industrialized Counterparts, but More Progress Is Needed

A new study of countries with liberal abortion laws finds that abortion is more common among women in their 20s than among women of other ages, according to "Legal Abortion Levels and Trends by Woman’s Age at Termination," by Gilda Sedgh et al. of the Guttmacher Institute. A large body of research has shown that this group often wants to postpone childbearing, which would interrupt their ability to work or complete their schooling; in addition, many young adult women have yet to establish stable partner relationships. The current study found that recent declines in the teen abortion rate in the United States (now at 20 abortions per 1,000 women aged 15–19) have put the United States on par for the first time with several other industrialized countries, including England and Wales, Scotland, Sweden and New Zealand. This marks a considerable change from the mid-1990s, when the U.S. teen abortion rate was substantially higher than that of any other industrialized nation. . . .

October 10, 2012 in Abortion, Contraception, International, Parenthood, Pregnancy & Childbirth, Sexuality, Teenagers and Children, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, September 29, 2012

State Restrictions on Abortion Evoke "World Before Roe"

Bloomberg News: Laws Revive 'World Before Roe' as Abortions Require Arduous Trek, by Amanda J. Crawford:

In the year since Carrie Klaege moved to Arizona and started a non-profit program to help poor women afford abortions, she’s watched access to the procedure get tougher for her clients.

Following a rash of new laws, abortions are no longer available at clinics outside Tucson and Phoenix and women must wait 24 hours after required ultrasound tests before terminating pregnancies -- forcing some to travel hundreds of miles and stay overnight. Klaege said she’s now making connections in other states where she could send women if the courts allow a ban on later abortions to take effect. . . . 

September 29, 2012 in Abortion, Anti-Choice Movement, State and Local News, State Legislatures, Women, General | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)