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Ballots, Babies, and Banners of PeaceAmerican Jewish Women's Activism, 1890-1940$
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Melissa R. Klapper

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780814748947

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814748947.001.0001

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“They Have Been the Pioneers”

“They Have Been the Pioneers”

American Jewish Women and the Mainstreaming of Birth Control

(p.135) 4 “They Have Been the Pioneers”
Ballots, Babies, and Banners of Peace

Melissa R. Klapper

NYU Press

This chapter explores the challenges and successes that Jewish women in the birth control movement encountered during the 1930s. Most Jewish women supported the strategy of increasing the number of birth control clinics, and Jewish women's organizations took up the cause in large numbers. Growing professionalization also provided Jewish women with expanding opportunities as birth control doctors, activists, and consumers. Moreover, the economic depredations of the Depression made contraception increasingly acceptable to a general and a Jewish public. Also, a series of court decisions in which Jewish women figured prominently as attorneys and defendants moved birth control into the mainstream. The chapter then examines the relationship between birth control and eugenics.

Keywords:   birth control movement, Jewish women's organizations, professionalization, contraception, birth control, eugenics

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