Tag Archives: christianity

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).

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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

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 

Charlemagne’s Christmas Coronation: A Very Merry HistoryBuffs Holiday Special

Join Marissa and Katie as they journey back to Rome on Christmas Day in the year 800 for one of the most famous coronations in European history. It’s a Christmas special, HistoryBuffs style!

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The life of Charlemagne in stained glass in the cathedral at Chartres. “Chartres – Vie de Charlemagne” |CC BY-SA 3.0 /Wikimedia Commons

 


Show Notes and Further Reading

Bones of an Emperor,” Medieval Histories, January 30, 2014.

Robert W. Dyson, “Medieval Rulers and Political Ideology” in Lansing, Carol, and Edward D. English. A Companion to the Medieval World. John Wiley & Sons, 2010.

Einhard’s “The Life of Charlemagne.”

Monica Fleener, “The Significance of the Coronation of Charlemagne“, December 22, 2010.

Richard E. Sullivan, ed. The Coronation of Charlemagne: What Did It Signify? Part of the Problems in European Civilization series. Boston: D.C. Heath and Co, 1959.

The Coronation of Charlemagne,” accessed via Seton Hall University.

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Charlemagne’s throne in the Cathedral at Aachen. |CC BY-SA 3.0 /Wikimedia Commons.


Choir music: Public domain choir recording Unus Ex Discipulis Meis found at the Free Music Archive.

Feature image: Claudius Jaquand, “Lors de l’ exposition Sacres Royaux, de Louis XIII à Charles”  |CC BY-SA 4.0 / Wikimedia Commons.