Essential Roe v. Wade Reading List

In light of this week’s Supreme Court news, we’ve assembled a list of books and journals that provide insightful analysis into the history of reproductive rights in the United States. This list is by no means exhaustive. We are fortunate to have an extensive backlist of women and gender studies titles. What’s on your reading list this week?

Women against Abortion: Inside the Largest Moral Reform Movement of the Twentieth Century

Karissa Haugeberg

Women from remarkably diverse religious, social, and political backgrounds made up the rank-and-file of anti-abortion activism. Empowered by–yet in many cases scared of–the changes wrought by feminism, they founded grassroots groups, developed now-familiar strategies and tactics, and gave voice to the movement’s moral and political dimensions.

Homeland Maternity: US Security Culture and the New Reproductive Regime

Natalie Fixmer-Oraiz

In US security culture, motherhood is a site of intense contestation—both a powerful form of cultural currency and a target of unprecedented assault. Linked by an atmosphere of crisis and perceived vulnerability, motherhood and nation have become intimately entwined, dangerously positioning national security as reliant on the control of women’s bodies.

Women, Gender, and Families of Color

Women, Gender, and Families of Color (WGFC) is a multidisciplinary journal that centers on the study of Black, Latina, Indigenous, and Asian American women, gender, and families. Within this framework, the journal encourages theoretical and empirical research from history, the social and behavioral sciences, and humanities including comparative and transnational research, and analyses of domestic social, political, economic, and cultural policies and practices within the United States.

The Moral Property of Women: A History of Birth Control Politics in America

Linda Gordon

The most complete history of birth control ever written. It covers the entire history of the intense controversies about reproductive rights that have raged in the United States for more than 150 years, from the earliest attempts of women to organize for the legal control of their bodies to the effects of second-wave feminism. Gordon defines the role that birth control has played in society’s attitudes toward women, sexuality, and gender equality, arguing that reproductive control has always been central to women’s status. She shows how opposition to it has long been part of the conservative opposition to gender equality.

Marching Dykes, Liberated Sluts, and Concerned Mothers: Women Transforming Public Space

Elizabeth Currans

From the Women in Black vigils and Dyke marches to the Million Mom March, women have seized a dynamic role in early twenty-first century protest. The varied demonstrations–whether about gender, sexuality, war, or other issues–share significant characteristics as space-claiming performances in and of themselves beyond their place in any broader movement.


About Kristina Stonehill