Recent posts

Confusion About Whether Pregnant Women Can Die

Republican Representative Joe Walsh has said that abortion is never necessary to save the life of a mother because “with modern technology and science, you can’t find one instance” of a pregnant woman dying. Um, no, sorry, that’s not the case. Medical advances have certainly aided women in surviving pregnancy and childbirth, but it’s not been an absolute triumph. For instance, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have stated in this article: “Abortions are necessary in a number of circumstances to save the life of a woman or to preserve her health. Unfortunately, pregnancy is not a risk-free life event.” Continue Reading →

On Rape And Pregnancy

I did not watch, read, or listen to the news for over a week, as I was busy getting married on the beach, going on a mini-honeymoon in Santa Barbara, and then performing dance for 4 days straight at one of the largest gaming conventions in the country. Beyond the chores of unpacking and laundry and scraping glitter off everything, all I wanted to do was sleep and recover. And then I came home to this. “This” being Representative Todd Akin’s comments about how in regard to the possibility of pregnancy after rape, in his understanding, ”if it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.” Far more bloggers than I can count have protested the idiocy behind these remarks, and pointed out the irony that a member of the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology would be so ill informed. Continue Reading →

“A” Pregnant CEO or “The” Pregnant CEO?

Marissa Mayer was just hired as CEO of Yahoo – while pregnant. As pointed out in The Atlantic: “A female chief executive who was hired while she was pregnant — and who will give birth just a few months into her tenure — is a symbolic turning point.” However, Mayer is also undergoing critique at Role Reboot for supporting WalMart: “I want women to succeed at business. But, I want no one to succeed at business who doesn’t respect the rights and dignity of workers, especially low-wage workers, most of whom are women.” Hopefully, women (whether pregnant or not) will continue to enter all levels of the workforce, so that A Pregnant CEO doesn’t need to be held up as the singular example or role model for this kind of phenomenon. Continue Reading →

Clarifying Arizona’s 20-Week Abortion Limit

I’ve seen a lot of furor online at Arizona’s proposal to ban abortions after 20 weeks – especially regarding the definition of pregnancy as starting two weeks prior to insemination, at the start date of the last menstrual period. Yes, this legislation is absolutely infuriating and wrong-headed, but not just for the reasons you think. As explained at Feministe, doctors have always calculated gestational age using the first day of the last period. It’s weird but that’s how it’s  done. So in medical terms, the new law wouldn’t change anything in terms of how we count… Continue Reading →

Why Getting Pregnant On TV Is A Bad Idea

And yes, obviously it’s a bad idea to get pregnant if you are on TV at the moment of conception… but what I want to talk about here is how when female characters on TV shows get pregnant, things tend to go badly for them, in ways that seem influenced by misogyny and a fear of women’s bodies. I just discovered a brilliant Youtube series called Tropes Vs. Women, about how TV and movie themes depict women in very stereotypical and sexist ways. My favorite so far is about “The Mystical Pregnancy,” which is when “writers use to create drama and terror by invading, violating and exploiting women’s reproductive capabilities.  Often these female characters have their ovaries harvested by aliens or serve as human incubators for demon spawn.  Sometimes they are carrying the Messiah and other times Satan himself.” Continue Reading →

Problems With Assessing Promiscuity

A New Zealand doctor expresses shock and horror at the level of promiscuity he perceives in local women, saying that many come to him, pregnant, stating that they cannot remember who they last had sex with. While the article raises some good points–that it might not be healthy to get intoxicated to the point of initiating sex with strangers–it also struck me as possibly being biased. Why would young women confide about their sexuality in doctors who are judging them? Promiscuity isn’t a problem in and of itself (and even then, how are you defining it?); inaccurate and judgmental portrayals also contribute to social and sexual problems.

Follow us on Twitter @mysexprofessor. Follow Jeana, the author of this post, @foxyfolklorist. Continue Reading →

The Media And Teen Pregnancy

The other night while I was listening to the radio, the DJ began discussing Jenelle Evans’ and her “video sensation” that continues to spread around the Internet. Now at this point, you may be thinking (besides, who is Jenelle Evans?), “Internet video sensation huh? Sounds kinda’ sexy.” Yet I hate to break it to you MSP-readers, this is far from sexy. Jenelle Evans’ video was not some sultry sex tape that leaked onto the Internet; Jenelle Evans’ video was of  herself (a former reality TV star from MTV’s “16 and Pregnant” and its spin off, “Teen Mom 2″) getting into a fight with another teenager – literally mounting her and repetitively punching her in the face. Continue Reading →

Social Media In Utero? Not According to Facebook

Oh social media. Some love it, some hate it.  But regardless of your feelings – most are exposed to it.  Whether you’re a teenie-bopper who is discovering the joys of MySpace for the first time or a business firm using Twitter to ‘network’ - social media has pretty much infiltrated all of the age groups. And as of late, it’s even made it’s way in utero. Continue Reading →

What Is It With Walgreens Policing Women’s Sexual Health?

Planned Parenthood reports that a Walgreens pharmacist in Idaho refused to fill a prescription for Methergine, a medicine used to control uterine bleeding following childbirth, a miscarriage, or an abortion. The pharmacist asked the nurse calling to fill the prescription whether it was needed for post-abortion care, and when the nurse (citing patient confidentiality) refused to answer, the pharmacist hung up. As one blogger notes, this is an attempt to punish women who exercise their reproductive rights. Right on the heels of some Walgreens pharmacists refusing to sell Plan B to men, this is a punitive, disturbing way of policing women’s sexual and reproductive health. Follow us on Twitter @mysexprofessor. Continue Reading →