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The business of birth control

Contraception and commerce in Britain before the sexual revolution

By Claire L. Jones

The business of birth control
Hardcover -
  • Price: £85.00
  • ISBN: 9781526136282
  • Publish Date: Sep 2020
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
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  • Price: £85.00
  • ISBN: 9781526182326
  • Publish Date: Sep 2024
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
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  • Price: £85.00
  • ISBN: 9781526136305
  • Publish Date: Sep 2020
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
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    Book Information

    • Format: Hardcover
    • ISBN: 978-1-5261-3628-2
    • Pages: 256
    • Price: £85.00
    • Published Date: September 2020
    • Series: Manchester University Press

    Description

    The business of birth control is the first book-length study to examine contraceptives as commodities in Britain before the pill. Drawing on new archives and neglected promotional and commercial material, the book demonstrates how hundreds of companies transformed condoms and rubber and chemical pessaries into consumer goods that became widely available via discreet mail order catalogues, newspapers, birth control clinics, chemists' shops and vending machines in an era when older and more reserved ways of thinking about sex jostled uncomfortably with modern and more open attitudes. The book outlines the impact of contraceptive commodification on consumers, but also demonstrates how closely the contraceptive industry was intertwined with the medical profession and the birth control movement, who sought authority in birth control knowledge at a time when sexual knowledge and who had access to it was contested.

    Reviews

    '[...] a much-needed addition'.
    Metascience

    The work of Jones and Drucker reveals key insights into how commerce and technology were
    both powerful enough forces to overcome the medical and legal restrictions that shaped reproductive
    health in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, but also maintained and even exacerbated
    racial and gendered reproductive inequality... absorbing and critiquing these lessons
    from the past will be a crucial task in the making of this century's reproductive policies of access
    and inclusion.
    Lauren MacIvor Thompson, Kennesaw State University, Kennesaw, GA, USA, Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences, 2023

    Contents

    Introduction: contraceptive commercialisation before the Pill
    1 The dynamics of production: contraceptive manufacturing
    2 Shaping markets: packaging, brands and trademarks
    3 The print culture of contraceptives: advertising and the circulation of birth control knowledge
    4 'As honest as business permits': medical practitioners, birth control clinics and contraceptive efficacy
    5 Over the counter and on the high street: contraceptive retailing in the urban landscape
    Epilogue

    Author

    Claire L. Jones is Senior Lecturer in the History of Medicine at the University of Kent.

    The business of birth control

    By Claire L. Jones

    Hardcover £85.00 / $130.00

    Paperback £20.00 / $29.95

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