A ginger haired woman holding a stick, smirking, with vintage outfits, from movie Hysteria.

Finding Satisfaction: A Review of Hysteria

Having researched and delivered conference papers on the topic, the medical historian in me danced a little jig when I heard Sony Pictures Classics was releasing a movie called “Hysteria.” I did, however, enter the theater with some reservations. Motion picture portrayals are notorious for being historically inaccurate, and if films are true to history, those not in the field tend to find it a little, well, boring. (That is unless Werner Herzog is narrating it with his dry but inadvertently humorous observations.) Thankfully, the $7.50 spent on a matinee wasn’t a waste at all. Just about anyone- unless you are akin to the Victorian “social purist” Anthony Comstock- can walk away from this movie feeling quite satisfied.

Buttons with slogans related to LGBT identity from the late twentieth century. Collections of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, Division of Medicine & Science.

Prescription for Heterosexuality

Our own Carolyn Herbst Lewis recently sat down with Jackie Wolf, host of WOUB’s Conversations From Studio B, to talk about her new book, Prescription For Heterosexuality: Sexual Citizenship in the Cold War Era. Carolyn’s book examines “how medical practitioners, especially family physicians, situated themselves as the guardians of Americans’ sexual well-being during the early years of the Cold War.

Community Nurse

Oh, Michigan…you just couldn’t let Wisconsin soak in the limelight of conservatism for too long, could you? I know there is a whole Badger/Wolverine rivalry, but honestly, you could have at least given the Dairy State one full day of being “King of the Crazy” before trying to snatch the crown away. n a move that will surely place The Mitten State squarely in the middle of the War on Women, the Detroit Free Press is reporting that the Michigan House is considering passing a controversial set of bills designed to restrict and regulate abortion practices.

A group of people gathering, holding slogans for public health reform, in Boston

Get Out of Our Exam Rooms: A Brief History of the Uneasy Relationship between Medicine and Politics

So far, 2012 has seen state legislators proposing an unprecedented number of bills aimed at regulating women’s access to various reproductive health services, including mammograms, annual pap smears to detect cervical cancer, contraceptives, and abortion, as well as women’s ability to pay for these services through private and public insurance providers. The underlying assumption in all of this health legislation is that women are unable to make informed, responsible decisions about their bodies unless they are mandated to do so by the state. A parallel implication is that even the physicians treating these women are incapable of making medically appropriate decisions without state interference. Medical professionals finally began fighting back on this political trespassing on their terrain just this week.

Yellow and black pills on US dollars

Sunday Morning Medicine

North Carolina becomes the first state in the nation to grant reparation payments to victims of its state-sanctioned eugenics .
LBGT Archives in danger.
Why stop at abortion rights? The Anti-Choice folks also want to restrict your options in end-of-life care.
Your grandmother was skinnier than you because she did more housework.
Was New Mexico’s Chief Medical Officer forced out because of her public comments on safe-sex practices?
The bizarre world of postpartum celebrity moms.

Women dressing styles, vintage magazine picture, Six women in vintage colorful dresses and hats

Sunday Morning Medicine

Isn’t it Ironic? – Singer Alanis Morissette weighs in on the attachment parenting debate.
Do pregnant black women receive worse medical treatment than white women?
The Crunk Feminist Collective examines black women, nudity, and the politics of touch.
Wisconsin licences its first midwife of color.
Oh those wacky 1920s…
Want to attract a man? Acting sleepy and stupid is apparently a good way to go.

Community Nurse

Combatting Bigotry: Activist Opportunities with Unite Women

Are you bothered by the nearly 1,000 in anti-woman legislation proposed in the past two years? Are you flabbergasted that the Violence Against Women Act is having trouble passing this session? Are you livid over bigoted comments like abused women should “remember the better times” or LGBT individuals should be put behind “electric fences”? Are discussions over the pill and birth control making you ask “this is 2012, right?!? And not 1960?….” Here is a chance to do something!

In memorial of gay holocaust, a picture of two gay men on the window, German words.

Does Pastor Worley Know (or Care) about the Origin of the Pink Triangle?

We interrupt your regularly scheduled blog post to bring you this late-breaking historical analysis of the news. I planned on devoting my blogpost this week to my experiences documenting the history of Alcoholics Anonymous, but then Pastor Worley happened. The head of the Providence Road Baptist Church in Maiden, North Carolina recently delivered a fiery sermon denouncing President Obama’s endorsement of same-sex marriage rights. His now-infamous sermon has swept the blogosphere and created easy fodder for the 24-hour news cycle. In Worley’s sermon he urges his congregation to never vote for “a baby killer and a homosexual lover.” Although some in the LBGT community would question whether the President is, in fact, a “homosexual lover,” many others, however, see the President’s public proclamation of support as a monumental step forward in the Gay Right’s Movement. Worley, on the other hand, sees Obama’s endorsement as a sin against nature, America and Christianity.

Photos from the 2012 premiere of What to Expect When You're Expecting in New York. Above: Chace Crawford, Brooklyn Decker, director Kirk Jones and Elizabeth Banks.

Defining the “Expect” in What To Expect When You’re Expecting

I remember the moment I found out I was pregnant. It was a glorious day. The sun was shining, the temperature was about 70 degrees, with a light breeze from the south, and the birds sang a glorious tune as I informed my wonderful husband that I was pregnant. We both hugged and contemplated the gift that was growing in my belly and what fantastic parents we were going to be. Pregnancy was just the beginning…