Art History; Psychology
Vaccaro Gray, Anna
women's reproductive lives; #metoo; IUD; reproductive rights; long term birth control
The results of the election of November 8, 2016 shocked millions of people nationally. Many women especially felt outraged, scared, and voiceless as they discovered that their country elected a sexual predator, a man who not only makes personal advances on women, but publicly threatens their human rights and access to healthcare. What does it feel like to be afraid to wake up one day and not be able to afford your medications? What does it feel like to live in a place where poor treatment of women is not only condoned but exemplified on the most public platform in the world? We don’t know these answers because women’s voices are drowned out by cries of ‘Make America Great Again’. This project aims to give voice to women who have taken their reproductive rights into their own hands. It is a podcast containing interviews of women who have switched to long term birth control methods since the election results in November 2016, bolstered by facts surrounding the social and political changes sweeping the nation. Although statistics can reflect the spike in conversion to IUDs and other long term birth control methods, they cannot truly reflect on a woman’s rationalization, feelings, or motives for this decision. The participants were asked to elaborate on their motivations for switching to long term birth control, and if they felt their relationship to birth control and other reproductive health concerns changed since Trump’s election. In order to capture both facts and experiences, a mixed-methodology format was used including statistics strengthened by real narrative accounts. This podcast is an account of the stigma, fear and reclamation of self-empowerment many women have experienced as a result of Donald Trump entering the presidential office. The main objective of this project is to document current feelings and thoughts regarding the state of our country and what it means to be a woman under Trump’s presidency. #makeuteriofamericagreatagain
This project gives voice to women who have taken their rights into their own hands. I have created a podcast containing interviews of women who have switched to long term birth control methods, bolstered by facts surrounding the social and political changes sweeping the nation. Participants of this project were asked to elaborate on their motives for switching to long term birth control, and if their relationship to reproductive health concerns changed since Trump’s election.
My goals for this project were to improve my interviewing skills and better facilitate examination of personal choices in a political context. The podcast facilitates and emphasizes listening to women while they share their experiences.
The most important take-home messages from this project are that:
1. Women before thinking about having babies, want to build careers and gain economic stability and independence.
2. Women are afraid that at any time their reproductive rights could be taken away from them.
3. When women are able to access low-cost contraception and preventative healthcare, they are able to pursue higher education and make greater contributions to the workforce.
4. Providing preventative care for women benefits the country as a whole with lower birthrates and less economic burden on federal and state levels.