Early American Family Limitation

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Birth control and abortion are constant flash points in contemporary politics, and they’re often described as signs of a rapidly changing society. But women have always had ways (though not always quite as effective ones) to control family size, and early American women were no exception. Understanding the role that reproductive rights has played in American history provides critical context to today’s debates. Have we always had these kinds of debates? How did Americans think about abortion in the late 18th century, or the 19th century? In this episode, Elizabeth and Sarah start a three part conversation about women’s reproductive rights in United States history by talking about birth control methods and abortion in the 18th and 19th century.

Show Notes & Further Reading 

Dayton, Cornelia Hughes. Women before the Bar : Gender, Law, and Society in Connecticut, 1639-1789 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1995).

Duden, Barbara.  The Woman beneath the Skin : A Doctor’s Patients in Eighteenth-Century Germany (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1991).

Gordon, Linda. The Moral Property of Women : A History of Birth Control Politics in America. 3rd edn (Urbana and Chicago: University of Illinois Press, 2002).

Klepp, Susan E.  Revolutionary Conceptions: Women, Fertility, and Family Limitation in America, 1760-1820 (Chapel Hill, 2009).

Mohr, James C.  Abortion in America : The Origins and Evolution of National Policy, 1800-1900 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1978).

Ulrich, Laurel Thatcher. A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812 (New York: Vintage Books, 1991).

Family Limitation in the Pre-Modern World

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In the wake of the Global Gag Rule that the U.S. President just issued in his first week in office, there is really no better time to start talking about the history of family limitation in all of its iterations across time and space – from various contraceptives invented by the ancient Egyptians to the many herbal remedies employed by midwives and women generally to “restore the menses” to a broader discussion of when and where states have attempted to control the reproductive feature of women’s bodies. This episode is just the first of many more to come addressing these very issues of women’s reproductive health and rights. Join Marissa and Averill as they dive into the wild, weird, and sometimes dangerous methods of family limitation in the pre-modern world.

Show Notes & Further Reading

Edwards,Stassa. “The History of Abortifacients.” Jezebel. 18 Nov 2014.

Biddlecom, Ann E. “Family Planning, Abortion, and Reproductive Health.” The Blackwell Encyclopedia of Sociology. Ritzer, George (ed). Blackwell Publishing, 2007.

Brick, P. 2003. “The Encyclopedia of Birth Control, Edited by Vern L. Bullough”. JOURNAL OF SEX RESEARCH. 40: 315.

Hardacre, Helen. Marketing the Menacing Fetus in Japan. Berkeley, Calif: University of California Press, 1999.

Hoffer, Peter Charles, and N. E. H. Hull. Murdering Mothers: Infanticide in England and New England, 1558-1803. New York: New York University Press, 1984.

James, Peter, and I. J. Thorpe. Ancient Inventions. 1994.

Poston, Dudley L. Fertility, Family Planning, and Population Policy in China. London: Routledge, 2006.

Riddle, John M. Contraception and Abortion from the Ancient World to the Renaissance. 1992.

Unschuld, Paul, and Jinsheng Zheng. Chinese Traditional Healing (3 Vols.) The Berlin Collections of Manuscript Volumes from the 16th Through the Early 20th Century. Leiden: BRILL, 2012

Wiesner, Merry E. Women and Gender in Early Modern Europe. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008.

Zheng, Tiantian. Ethnographies of Prostitution in Contemporary China: Gender Relations, HIV/AIDS, and Nationalism. New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2009

Immunizations and Anti-Vax Movements

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Vaccination has been a controversial subject and we tend to think that this is a new phenomenon. Proponents of vaccination blame anti-vax parents for the recent cropping-up of preventable (and formerly eliminated) diseases such as the NYC measles outbreak in 2014, and the return of Pertussis in 2015. While parents who oppose vaccination or those who believe in vaccine choice are suspicious of the CDC’s rigorous vaccine schedule, “Big Pharma,” and the possibility of vaccine injury due to questionable ingredients. But this is NOT new. Debate and conflict have existed around the use and efficacy of immunizations since the practice first came into use. This episode considers the history of immunization and its opponents.

Show Notes and Further Reading:

Arthur Boylston, “The Origins of Inoculation,” Journal of the Royal Society of MedicineJuly 2012

Daniel R. Bronfin, Childhood Immunization Controversies: What are Parents Asking?”, The Ochsner Journal, Fall 2008

Carole Emberton, “The Minister of Death,” The New York Times Opinionator BlogAugust 17, 2012

Amy Lynn Filsinger & Raymond Dwek,George Washington and the First Mass Military Inoculation,” The John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress.

“History of Anti-Vaccination Movements,” The History of VaccinesJanuary 25, 2016

Humphries, Margaret. The Marrow of Tragedy: The Health Crisis of the American Civil War (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins, 2013).

Charlotte DeCroes Jacobs, “Vaccinations Have Always Been Controversial in America,” Time Magazine, July 31, 2015

Robert Middlekauff, The Mathers: Three Generations of Puritan Intellectuals, 1596-1728. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999.

Terry Reimer, “Smallpox and Vaccination in the Civil War,” The National Museum of Civil War Medicine November 9, 2004

Stefan Riedel, “Edward Jenner and the History of Smallpox and Vaccination,” Baylor University Medical Center Proceedings January 2005

Mariana Zapata, “How Civil Wars Gave Themselves Syphilis While Trying to Avoid Smallpox,” Atlas ObscuraNovember 30, 2016.


Featured image: An 1802 illustration depicts Edward Jenner vaccinating a young woman. (National Museum of Medicine)

Selling Vegetarianism

There’s a lot more to vegetarianism than meets the eye. In this episode, Averill, Sarah, and Tommy talk turkey – or, maybe tofurkey? – and graham crackers, the corpses of baby fawns, and the Beef-Steak Chapel. Listen, learn, and laugh with us today on the History Buffs Podcast.

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Show Notes & Further Reading

Berry, Ryan. “From cowherd to cornflakes: the religious roots of modern vegetarianism” Animals’ Agenda v18 i6 Nov 1998.

Collingham, Lizzie Curry: A Tale of Cooks and Conquerors. Oxford, UK: University of Oxford Press, 2006.

Johnson, James. The influence of tropical climates on European constitutions, including practical observations on the nature and treatment of the diseases of Europeans on their return from tropical climates. London, UK: Callow Medical Book Seller, 1815.

Maurer, Donna. Vegetarianism: Movement or Moment: Promoting a LIfestyle for Cult Change. Philadelphia: Temple U Press, 2010.

Marranca, Richard. “Vegging out with Kung Fu and Star Trek.” Vegetarian Journal i4 2007.

Sinha, Mrinalini. Colonial Masculinity: The ‘Manly Englishman’ and the’ Effeminate Bengali’ in the Late Nineteenth Century. Manchester, UK: Manchester University Press, 1995.

Streets, Heather. Martial Races: the Military, Race and Masculinity in British Imperial Culture, 1857-1914 (Manchester, UK: Manchester University Press, 2004), 19.

Whorton, James C. “Historical Development of Vegetarianism.” American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 1994.

Thanksgiving: Part II

Last year we came to you with a bit of the history of the first American Thanksgiving. This year, we’re casting our net a bit wider. Join Averill and Sarah as they talk about the complicated history of corn, some insights into Haudenosaunee food culture, and some regional perspectives on Thanksgiving.

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Show Notes and Further Reading

Bachmann, Karen. “Canadian origin to Thanksgiving?” The Daily Press. October 11, 2015. 

Warren,  Nathan B. The Holidays: Christmas, Easter, and Whitsuntide; together with the May-day, Midsummer, and Harvest-Home Festivals. Troy, N.Y., H. B. Nims and Company: 1876.

Mann, Barbara Alice. George Washington’s War on Native America. (Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 2008).

Moss, Robert. “How Thanksgiving, ‘The Yankee Abolitionist Holiday,’ Won Over the South.” 

Pleck, Elizabeth. “ The Making of the Domestic Occasion: The History of Thanksgiving in the United States.” Journal of Social History. 07/1999, Volume 32, Issue 4. 

Thanksgiving in Canada.” The Canadian Encyclopedia.

“The Harvest Home: An Old English Festival Akin to Thanksgiving.” New York Tribune. (Nov 27, 1895): 20.

Gandondagan Seneca Art & Culture Center 

Freida Jacques explains the Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address 

Text of a version of the Haudenosaunee Thanksgiving Address

Iroquois White Corn Project (Don’t forget to order some corn!)

The Haudenosaunee Confederacy 

Oren Lyons tells the story of The Peacemaker & The Tadadaho 

Remember the 5th of November

Dan, Averill, and Tommy ponder the meaning of a mask, political and religious oppression, and anarchy. Stuff your Fawkes effigy, we’re talking Bonfire Night / Pope Day / Guy Fawkes Day on the podcast!

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Show Notes & Further Reading

Gunpowder Plot,” The National Archives

Guy Fawkes,” The History Learning site

Ervin Beck, “Children’s Guy Fawkes Customs in Sheffield” Folklore, Vol. 95, No. 2 (1984), pp. 191-203

Lewis Call, “A is for Anarchy, V is for Vendetta: Images of Guy Fawkes and the Creation of Postmodern Anarchism,” Anarchist Studies 16.2 (2008): 154-172,105.

Damian Carrington, “Gunpowder Plot would have devastated London,” New Scientist, November 5, 2003 

Michael Cottrell, “Green and Orange in Mid-Nineteenth-Century Toronto: The Guy Fawkes’ Day Episode of 1864”  The Canadian Journal of Irish Studies, Vol. 19, No. 1 (Jul., 1993), pp. 12-21

Antonia Fraser, Faith and Treason: The Story of the Gunpowder Plot (New York: Doubleday, 1996)

Megan Lane, “If Guy Fawkes had Succeeded,” BBC News, November 4, 2005

John Pollock, The Popish Plot: A Study in the History of the Reign of Charles II (Duckworth: Great Britain, 1903)

James Sharpe, Remember, Remember: A Cultural History of Guy Fawkes Day Harvard University press, 2005

John N. Wall, Jr. and Terry Bunce Burgin. “This Sermon . . . upon the Gun-Powder Day”: The Book of Homilies of 1547 and Donne’s Sermon in Commemoration of Guy Fawkes’ Day, 1622. South Atlantic Review, Vol. 49, No. 2 (May, 1984), pp. 19-30

Cash in a Bag

Today we’re talking about corruption in American politics.  And honestly, is there a better time to talk about this topic than now?  Join Elizabeth and Katie as they discuss some scintillating political scandals in U.S. politics.

Speaking of politics, have you registered to vote yet?

tammany


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Featured image:  Harry F. Sinclair, multimillionaire oil magnate (left) and his counsel Martin W. Littleton. Teapot Dome hearing. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/pp.print Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-hec-44031

Tammany Hall:  A rational law, or – Tammany // C.J. Taylor. Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA http://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/pp.print Reproduction Number: LC-USZC4-7884

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