How should we talk about reproductive rights?

Writing in Harvard University's Health and Human Rights Journal, Lynn Morgan, Mary E. Woolley Professor of Anthropology at Mount Holyoke College, takes on the question of how activists talk about the need for women to control their own bodies and reproductive choices.

In “Reproductive Rights or Reproductive Justice? Lessons from Argentina," Morgan shares insights from discussions with Argentine feminist anthropologists, social scientists, and reproductive rights activists.

"Argentine sexual and reproductive rights activists insist on using the language and framework of 'human rights,' even when many reproductive rights activists in the United States and elsewhere now prefer the framework of 'reproductive justice,' “ Morgan notes. Her paper analyzes why the Argentine movement to legalize abortion "relies on the contested concept of human rights."

"Argentine feminist human rights activists have long been attentive to the ways that social class, gender, migration, and racism intersect with reproduction," she wrote. "Because their government respects and responds to a human rights framework, however, they have not felt it necessary—as U.S. feminists have—to invent a new notion of reproductive justice in order to be heard."