SEIZING OUR BODIES: The Politics of Women Health Care, an Anthology by Claudia--Ed. Drelfus

SEIZING OUR BODIES: The Politics of Women Health Care, an Anthology

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That women have been victimized by the medical establishment--as patients, aspiring students, health workers--was systematically demonstrated in Corea's Women's Health Care (p. 192). This feminist anthology covers some of the same critical territory, with a few entries on past practices (""History/Herstory""), many more detailing recent cases of questionable or irresponsible procedures, and a brief assessment of the movement today. Barbara Seaman ably summarizes the dangers of oral contraceptives, and Dowie and Johnston provide the horror story--greed and doctored research data--of the Dalkon shield. In the section on ""Institutionalized Male-Practice,"" the politics of breast cancer, pill pushing, and unnecessary hysterectomies are reviewed, and Rosetta Reitz offers an angered listing of ""What Doctors Won't Tell You about Menopause,"" Also, abortion policy reversals, class factors that influence both treatment and employment practices, Ellen Frankfort's now-famous article on self-examination with a speculum, and Dreifus' admiring piece on Doris Turner, the snappy Local 1199 official who may well succeed Leon Davis as union president. Underlying the specific charges are the chief complaints that arrogance and insensitivity are common physician attitudes and that medical institutions are unresponsive to women's needs--charges which have some validity but which, ignoring what has been accomplished, show an insularity of their own. Altogether, though, this is a roundup of the more inflammatory issues concerning women's health care today.

Pub Date: Jan. 31st, 1977
Publisher: Random House