Birth Control Battles: How Race and Class Divided American Religion

Suzanne Roberts Theatre 480 South Broad Street, Philadelphia
December 11, 2019 6:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Associate Professor of Sociology
University of Pennsylvania

Conservative and progressive religious groups fiercely disagree about issues of sex and gender. But how did we get here? In this talk, Melissa J. Wilde shows how today’s modern divisions began in the 1930s in the public battles over birth control and not for the reasons we might expect. By examining thirty of America’s most prominent religious groups—from Mormons to Methodists, Southern Baptists to Seventh Day Adventists, and many others—Wilde contends that fights over birth control had little do with sex, women’s rights, or privacy.

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