Contraception, abortion and state socialism: categories in birth control discourses and policies
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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The article is about the politics of birth control in Central and Eastern Europe (CEE). I will map abortion and contraception policies and discourses during and after state socialism, with Russia, Poland and Romania as main cases. Furthermore, historical and contemporary constructions of birth control in these countries are contrasted to western European debates, in order to denaturalise implicit assumptions in the different contexts. The analytical focus will in particular be on the conceptual distinction between contraception and abortion and on different normative assessments of these two categories, with examples from ‘border conflicts’ – controversies on whether a phenomenon is the one or the other. The rhetoric of ‘choice’ in abortion debates and its implicit assumptions will also be discussed.