QC Research Highlights: Community and Love

CUNY Academic Works Logo

Welcome to the November edition of QC Research Highlights! This month will feature some publications by Queens College faculty that have to do with community love and support in various contexts: disaster preparedness, recovery from mental illness, children’s writings, and human connection to the natural world.

Thanks to all the authors who have contributed their works.

All the works featured in this series are available to read and download for free from CUNY Academic Works. 

Social Sciences

Anna Bounds (Sociology) explores how New York City disaster preppers responded to COVID-19 in the early days of the pandemic in her article, “The Rise of Prepping in New York City: Community Resilience and COVID-19”. Bounds studied the New York City Prepper’s Network, a group that aims to prepare for disasters and to share knowledge to help their communities survive under such circumstances. As this article points out, New York City has endured numerous disasters throughout the years. While self-sufficiency is a value often associated with preppers, Bounds shows that one role of such a group is to build the social infrastructure to support survival in the case of a disaster. NYCDN teaches preparedness, organizes its members, and connects to local experts. Their work builds community resilience.

Murphy Halliburton (Anthropology), in his chapter “The House of Love and the Mental Hospital: Zones of Care and Recovery in South India,” shows how community care in South India aids recovery from schizophrenia and related disorders. While he resists romanticizing the Indian family, Halliburton emphasizes sneham, caring love, which is distinct from romantic love. Through a series of patient interviews, he noted that those patients whose families were most involved in their care fared better in their recovery. Those who were most isolated from their families talked about their loss of loving connections, while those who were recovering well attributed their success to their connection with their families. The article also examines a psychosocial rehabilitation center, Sneehavedu, which takes in the mentally ill who have no families and attempts to provide caring and affection for them. While they do refer patients to mental hospitals when necessary, the support they get at the rehabilitation center also enables recovery.


Ted Kesler (Elementary and Early Childhood Education), in his article “’Does it Have to be a Real Story? A Social Semiotic Assessment of an Emerging Writer,” examines the interpersonal qualities of young children’s writings, which are overlooked by assessment instruments.  Positioning himself as a parent-researcher, Kesler uses a writing event with his young son as a source of formative assessment. He recorded and coded an interaction during which his son composed and explained a story. Kesler analyzes how his son interacted with him during this process; the child made deliberate choices about his story but also sought approval along the way. This process was performative and interpersonal. Kesler recommends this strategy of formative assessment – interacting with children and observing their writing process to better understand and support their learning. This form of observation gives a richer sense of how children go about their writing and seek support for it, whereas forms of assessment that focus on the writing product risk missing this interpersonal aspect of children’s writing. He describes his approach as “naturalistic research, based in relationship and love.”

Arts and Humanities

The last article featured in this post complicates these ideas about the virtue of community. Leila Walker (Library) is the author of the “Elizabeth Kent’s New Tales of Botanical Friendship.” As Walker explains, Elizabeth Kent was a nineteenth-century writer whose work includes children’s stories and botanical works. Kent is remembered as a member of the so-called “Cockney School,” which was deeply attached to sociability.  Walker argues that Kent’s botanical works exemplify the Cockney School’s philosophy by gathering together poems as plants (thus linking poetry to the natural world) in a collection where the poets of her social circle are linked to the poets of the past that they admired, imagining an ahistorical community among poets. At the same time, however, she is commenting from the margins of this community. Walker notes that Kent complains that her flowers – representing her friendships – have died. Furthermore, her use of plants is connected to the use of botanical metaphors to define women’s roles; Kent’s work resists the passivity associated with plants. Walker argues that “By collecting a Cockney canon from the margins, Kent uses the conventions of botanical and literary collecting to create a space for
herself within (and around) the networks of friendship that defined the Cockney community.”

This is one of a series of blog posts featuring faculty publications in CUNY Academic Works. Academic Works is a service of the CUNY Libraries dedicated to collecting and providing access to the research, scholarship, and creative and pedagogical work of the City University of New York. In service to CUNY’s mission as a public university, content in Academic Works is freely available to all. 

If you would like to share your research in Academic Works, please see this guide to Academic Works, or contact Nancy.Foasberg@qc.cuny.edu.

Open Access Week 2022

This last week of October, we are once again celebrating Open Access Week!

What is Open Access?

International Open Access Week Ocean

Open access is all about distributing scholarly research without financial or other access barriers.  This helps readers, especially those who don’t have access to institutional subscriptions, and it helps authors, who can gain a broader audience for their work.

Open access can be achieved in many different ways. While you may have heard that many publishers offer open access, either by default for all publications or selectively via a “hybrid” model, open access can also mean making your work available in an institutional repository, like CUNY Academic Works, or a subject repository, like arXiv (or one of many others, depending on your field!).

Open access does not always involve paying a fee as the author.

  • Many open access publishers do not charge fees
  • Open access via self-archiving in a repository is free, and almost all publishers allow it

You can learn more about open access in this set of guides covering related issues, or you could contact the library’s scholarly communication librarian!  I can answer questions about publisher policies, evaluating prospective publishers, depositing to CUNY Academic Works, making yourself and your work more visible, and more.

International Open Access Week 2022

The theme for International Open Access Week 2022 is climate justice. How does open access promote climate justice?

In the words of SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition):

Openness can create pathways to more equitable knowledge sharing and serve as a means to address the inequities that shape the impacts of climate change and our response to them.

This year’s focus on Climate Justice seeks to encourage connection and collaboration among the climate movement and the international open community. Sharing knowledge is a human right, and tackling the climate crisis requires the rapid exchange of knowledge across geographic, economic, and disciplinary boundaries.

Keep an eye out for CUNY events related to open access and climate justice. While schedules did not align in a way that allowed these events to happen during the designated Open Access Week, these issues continue to be relevant, and we plan to offer something soon.

Events: Understanding New Guidelines for Federally Funded Research

The library is holding an event on October 26, 2022 on the new guidelines for federally funded research! Please join us. There is more information in the event blog post.

Electronic Resource: MLA Handbook

MLA Handbook

The Queens College Library is pleased to announce that we have a one-year subscription to the online version of the MLA Handbook!

This is an essential resource if you are writing a paper or an article and need to cite your sources in MLA style. The Handbook provides clear and detailed explanations of each element needed for a citation, with plentiful examples.

The MLA handbook will help you to compose your Works Cited page, properly cite your in-text citations, and format your work more generally. As the authoritative resource on MLA style, it answers typical questions (“What order do the elements go in this citation?”), complicated questions (“How do I cite a work without a title?”), and everything in between.

QC Research Highlights: Published in 2022

CUNY Academic Works Logo

Welcome to another edition of QC Research Highlights! Many QC Highlights posts in the past have focused on a theme linking the research presented. This post’s theme is centered around recently published 2022 articles. After all, Fall is a great time to catch up. Please enjoy the fascinating work of QC authors.

All the works featured in this series are available to read and download for free from CUNY Academic Works. 

Social Sciences

I would like to start with an article from none other than our president! Frank Wu (QC President) has written extensively on the history of race in the United States, with a particular interest in the status of Asian Americans. In his article, “Asian Americans Challenge the Official Racial Nationalism of the United States,” Wu examines the history of Asian American citizenship. He analyzes both the United States v. Wong Kim Ark (1898) and Korematsu v. United States (1948); in both these cases, the citizenship of individuals born in the United States to Asian immigrant parents was at stake.  Wong Kim Ark claimed his right to citizenship under the Fourteenth Amendment, but the US solicitor general argued against it on racial nationalist grounds. Ultimately, the Supreme Court sided with Wong, and “the category of Chinese American was created.”  The Korematsu case, fifty years later, challenged the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II, but the justices refused to rule on the issue of detention. Ultimately, Wu argues that citizenship must be maintained via political participation.

QC faculty are also participating in fruitful cross-disciplinary partnerships. Dana Weinberg (Sociology) and Adam Kapelner (Mathematics) co-authored the article “Do Book Consumers Discriminate against Black, Female, or Young Authors?” Weinberg’s scholarly focus is on writing in the digital age and discrimination in publishing, while Kapelner’s work is on experimental design and machine learning.  Weinberg and Kapelner noted the racial and gender inequalities in the publishing industry. In this article, they test the common assertion that readers discriminate by buying fewer books by Black, female, and young authors, thus making them a worse investment for publishers. For this study, the researchers created fictitious book covers with randomized genres, cover designs, and author names and photos, and had participants rate their level of interest in the books they supposedly represented. Participants in this study did not discriminate against Black or female authors, and in fact showed a preference for Black authors. Thus, the reluctance of publishers to publish books by Black and female authors is not rational. The authors suggest that publishers work to improve the diversity of their published authors.

Math and Natural Sciences

I’d also like to note a new work from a faculty member whose work also has been getting a lot of well-deserved national attention. A previous installment of QC Research Highlights featured the work of John Dennehy (Biology), whose team helped to develop a method of testing wastewater for COVID. Dennehy and the other authors, including many QC students and technicians (credited in the article), have continued this work with a new article, “Tracking Cryptic SARS-CoV-2 Lineages Detected in NYC Wastewater.” The researchers found that the wastewater carried traces of several mutations of COVID that are rarely seen in clinical settings. It may be that patients with these mutations simply were not sampled in a clinical setting, or that these lineages occur only in the gut and aren’t picked up by standard COVID tests. The article also considers whether these mutations may be carried by rats or other NYC mammals, however, the lack of animal DNA in the sample makes that unlikely. In any case, these variants showed some resistance to antibodies.

Arts and Humanities

Xiao Li (Classical, Middle Eastern and Asian Languages and Cultures) and Hongyong Liu (University of Macao) co-authored “Dimensional Adjectives in Nuosu Yi.” Li is a linguist who studies semantics and syntax-semantic interfaces. Nuosu Yi is a language spoken by the Yi people, a minority ethnic group in China. This paper focuses on dimensional adjectives, that is, adjectives describing concepts such as size, height, depth, and so on. Li and Liu distinguish between “positive adjectives,” which describe things, and “equative adjectives,” which compare things (“Ayi is tall” vs “Ayi is taller than Aguo.”) A few adjectives in Nuosu Yi form special constructions when they are changed from positive to equative adjectives.  As far as the researchers know, there are only ten of these. This is interesting not only for the study of Nuosu Yi but also for understanding how degree adjectives work across languages.

Thanks for reading, and thanks to all the authors whose work is included here!

This is one of a series of blog posts featuring faculty publications in CUNY Academic Works. Academic Works is a service of the CUNY Libraries dedicated to collecting and providing access to the research, scholarship, and creative and pedagogical work of the City University of New York. In service to CUNY’s mission as a public university, content in Academic Works is freely available to all. 

If you would like to share your research in Academic Works, please see this guide to Academic Works, or contact Nancy.Foasberg@qc.cuny.edu.

Upcoming Event: Understanding New Guidelines for Federally Funded Research

Update 11/4/22: Event Presentation Slides

The Queens College Library is celebrating Open Access Week with a workshop on the new guidelines for federally funded research. The workshop will be held on Wednesday, October 26, 2:00-3:00 PM.

In August 2022, the White House released new guidelines for sharing federally funded research. These guidelines aim to ensure public access to research, and if your research is federally funded, they will probably affect your work! 

The new memo goes much further than previous open access requirements by federal agencies. These new guidelines, which will be implemented by 2025, will require that:

  • Federally funded research is made available without embargo
  • Research results be made available in repositories as identified by the agencies
  • Publications be made available in machine-readable forms according to NISO standards to improve accessibility
  • Research data be made available along with the publication (except in cases where this isn’t appropriate)

These guidelines will apply to many more agencies than the previous policies did – so a lot more research is going to be made publicly available when these are enacted.

Ultimately, these guidelines mean your work will be available in new ways and to new audiences.
This workshop will cover what we know about these requirements so far, how they might affect your research and publication processes, and where and how readers might encounter your work.

We hope you’ll join us for the workshop!

Workshop Details:

Share Post:

New Guide: Sexual Assault Awareness Month Resources

Resources for Sexual Assault Awareness Month, by Nancy Foasberg, Librarian for Women and Gender Studies

The QC Library observes Sexual Assault Awareness Month in April with a selection of resources related to awareness of sexual assault, supporting victims, and ending sexual violence. Following the lead of the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, the library’s guide will focus on building safer spaces online. Thus, resources in the Library’s Sexual Assault Awareness Month Guide cover topics such as cyberstalking, revenge porn, online anti-harassment activism, and protecting your privacy online.

I also highly recommend you visit the official National Sexual Assault Awareness Month website, which includes a variety of valuable resources.

Content Note: The resources in this blog post and the accompanying guide deal with sexual assault and may sometimes describe assaults or other sexual abuse.

Here are a few highlights from the library guide:

Website: Data Detox Kit, from Tactical Tech. The Data Detox Kit is a simple, accessible toolkit that walks you through the steps you can take towards a more in-control online self. It takes a holistic approach, going through the different aspects of your digital life, from the amount of time you spend on your phone, to the apps that you use, to the passwords you set.

Documentary: Netizens. After their lives are overturned by vicious online harassment, ‘Netizens’ follows three women as they confront digital abuse and strive for equality and justice online. Directed by ‘Bully’ producer/writer Cynthia Lowen, the film bears witness as a courageous wave of individuals transform the web as we know it.

Book: Dismantling Rape Culture: The Peacebuilding Power of “Me Too.”This book analyses rape culture through the lens of the ‘me too’ era. Drawing feminist theory into conversation with peace studies and improvisation theory, it advocates for peace-building opportunities to transform culture and for the improvisatory resources of ‘culture- jamming’ as a mechanism to dismantle rape culture. The book’s key argument is that cultural attitudes and behaviors can be shifted through the introduction of disrupting narratives, so each chapter ends with a ‘culture-jammed’ re-telling of a traditional fairy tale.

Book: eGirls, eCitizens: Putting Technology, Theory and Policy into Dialogue with Girls’ and Young Women’s Voices. eGirls, eCitizens is a landmark work that explores the many forces that shape girls’ and young women’s experiences of privacy, identity, and equality in our digitally networked society. Aimed at moving dialogues on scholarship and policy around girls and technology away from established binaries of good vs bad, or risk vs opportunity, these seminal contributions explore the interplay of factors that shape online environments characterized by a gendered gaze and too often punctuated by sexualized violence. Perhaps most importantly, this collection offers first-hand perspectives collected from girls and young women themselves, providing a unique window on what it is to be a girl in today’s digitized society.

Book: Perspectives on Stalking: Victims, Perpetrators, and Cyberstalking.  Stalking-characterized by harassment, repeated calling, sending inappropriate letters or gifts, unsuitable use of social media, confrontation, and other unwanted behaviors-is a worldwide problem that is on the rise, especially the incidence and prevalence of cyberstalking. This book presents a collection of prominent articles published in the peer-reviewed journal Violence and Victims, written by experts on stalking from a variety of social science disciplines. Authors present research related to stalking victims and perpetrators, cyberstalking, how to identify stalking, and stalking in a variety of settings with a focus on college campuses.

Book: This is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things: Mapping the Relationship between Online Trolling and Mainstream Culture. In this provocative book, Whitney Phillips argues that trolling, widely condemned as obscene and deviant, actually fits comfortably within the contemporary media landscape. Trolling may be obscene, but, Phillips argues, it isn’t all that deviant. Trolls’ actions are born of and fueled by culturally sanctioned impulses–which are just as damaging as the trolls’ most disruptive behaviors. Phillips describes, for example, the relationship between trolling and sensationalist corporate media–pointing out that for trolls, exploitation is a leisure activity; for media, it’s a business strategy. She documents how trolls, in addition to parroting media tropes, also offer a grotesque pantomime of dominant cultural tropes, including gendered notions of dominance and success and an ideology of entitlement. We don’t just have a trolling problem, Phillips argues; we have a culture problem. This Is Why We Can’t Have Nice Things isn’t only about trolls; it’s about a culture in which trolls thrive.

QC Research Highlights: Thinking about Science 

CUNY Academic Works Logo

Welcome to the April 2022 edition of QC Research Highlights! As the weather warms (I hope) and the flowers on campus begin to bloom, it’s time to bring you another collection of faculty research available in CUNY Academic Works.  

I’m including some articles from the sciences in this post, but I also wanted to include some works from other fields with a relationship to the scientific. All the works featured in this post deal with either physical or mental processes, or both.  

(I’ll also note that all these works are a few years old; if you’re intrigued, you should also check out the authors’ more recent work!) 

All the works featured in this series are available to read and download for free from CUNY Academic Works. 


Jason Tougaw (English) works in Consciousness Studies, and is specifically interested in the sense of the self and the relationship between the mind and the brain. His chapter, “The Self Is a Moving Target: The Neuroscience of Siri Hustvedt’s Artists,” analyzes the use of ekphrasis (the verbal description of works of visual art) in the works of Siri Hustvedt, a novelist who has also published academic research articles about neuroscience and memoirs about her own seizure disorder. Many of Hustvedt’s characters are artists who use visual media to portray the people around them. Tougaw argues that Hustvedt’s work explores the ethical implications of art’s power to “fix” a person’s identity at a specific moment in time, thus rendering them an artistic object. Ultimately, Tougaw sees Hustvedt’s work as arguing for a sense of identity rooted in subjectivity, change, and relationships. 

Math and Natural Sciences 

Cathy Savage-Dunn (Biology), along with at-the-time QC graduate students James F. Clark, Michael Meade, and Gehan Ramepura and co-author David H. Hall (Albert Einstein College of Medicine) published the article “Caenorhabditis elegans DBL-1/BMP Regulates Lipid Accumulation via Interaction with Insulin Signaling”. Savage-Dunn’s lab studies cell-to-cell signaling in nematodes (roundworms) – specifically, C. elegans. This article is about how cells regulate inputs to achieve metabolic homeostasis; specifically, it examines the role of a specific group of proteins (BMPs) in regulating lipids. BMP signaling was found to regulate lipid metabolism by signaling to the insulin pathway. Understanding this network is important to gaining a better understanding of metabolic disorders such as type II diabetes. 

Usha Barahmand (Psychology) and co-authors (Ehsan Tavakolian and Ali Khazaee from the University of Mohaghegh and K. Mohammadi of Shahrekord University) studied the cognitive effects of methadone treatment for opioid addition in their article “Hot and Cold Executive Functions in Pure Opioid Users Undergoing Methadone Maintenance Treatment: Effects of Methadone Dose, Treatment Duration, and Time Between Last Methadone Administration and Testing.” Methadone treatment can benefit opioid users but is also associated with executive function impairment. The researchers used various tests to better understand participants’ cognitive responses, including decision-making, emotion perception, cognitive flexibility, working memory, and response inhibition. (I would recommend looking at the article for further descriptions of each of these very interesting tests.) The participants who had taken higher doses of methadone had more difficulty with the tasks involving cognitive flexibility and emotion perception, especially anger, but the authors also point out that not all studies agree on these points. This article also finds a relationship between the duration of methadone treatment and the decline in cognitive flexibility and several other areas, but the other effects seemed to decrease over time.  


Finally, I’d like to feature an article that directly addresses cross-disciplinary thinking.  Bradley W. Bergey (Secondary Education and Youth Services), along with co-authors Joanna K. Garner (Old Dominion University), Avi Kaplan (Temple University), and Stephanie Hathcock (Oklahoma State University) write about concept mapping in professional development in their article, “Concept Mapping as a Mechanism for Assessing Science Teachers’ Cross-Disciplinary Field-Based Learning.”  Secondary teachers with deeper subject knowledge and an understanding of the connections between disciplines are able to adopt better pedagogical strategies. The researchers used concept maps in a summer institute for science teachers’ professional development. Over the course of the institute, teachers were able to create concept maps reflecting a more sophisticated understanding of the subject matter and the links among different concepts. This article suggests one possible model of enriching teacher professional development to promote constructivist pedagogy. 

Thanks for reading, and thanks to all the authors who have included their works in CUNY Academic Works.  

This is one of a series of blog posts featuring faculty publications in CUNY Academic Works. Academic Works is a service of the CUNY Libraries dedicated to collecting and providing access to the research, scholarship, and creative and pedagogical work of the City University of New York. In service to CUNY’s mission as a public university, content in Academic Works is freely available to all. 

If you would like to share your research in Academic Works, please see this guide to Academic Works, or contact Nancy.Foasberg@qc.cuny.edu.

Celebrating Diversity: Irish-American Heritage Month Resources

Resources for Irish-American Heritage Month, by Nancy Foasberg, Librarian for Irish Studies  

The QC Library celebrates Irish-American Heritage Month by gathering and presenting resources related to the Irish-American experience, and to the achievements of Irish Americans.  

The Irish-American Heritage Month guide features both types of resources.  To present a picture of Irish-American history, it includes books about Irish immigration to the United States, Irish-Americans in the American Civil War, and the Irish-American experience. The guide also honors the literary and artistic achievements of Irish-Americans, including in poetry, short stories, and film.  

Here are a few highlights from the guide: 

Documentary Film: Adelante (2014). Adelante showcases an Irish Catholic church on the outskirts of Philadelphia that is attracting the patronage of Mexican immigrants in the area. The film shares the expectant joy of the newly arrived families as they establish lives in an unfamiliar, often bewildering country that offers opportunities entangled with sometimes painful compromises. At its core, Adelante is a celebration of two groups’ growth and an embrace of their evolving community. 

Book: The Columbia Guide to Irish-American History (2005). Timothy J. Meagher fuses an overview of Irish American history with an analysis of historians’ debates, an annotated bibliography, a chronology of critical events, and a glossary discussing crucial individuals, organizations, and dates. He addresses a range of key issues in Irish American history from the first Irish settlements in the seventeenth century through the famine years in the nineteenth century to the volatility of 1960s America and beyond. The result is a definitive guide to understanding the complexities and paradoxes that have defined the Irish American experience. 

Book: The Irish American Experience in New Jersey and Metropolitan New York: Cultural Identity, Hybridity, and Commemoration (2014). his book is a collection of nine essays exploring the Irish-American experience in the New Jersey and New York metropolitan area, both historically and today. The essays place the local Irish-American experience in the wider context of immigration studies, assimilation, and historical theory. 

Poetry Collection: The Sphere of Birds (2008). The Sphere of Birds, Ciaran Berry’s debut collection of poems, effortlessly moves back and forth between here and there, then and now, the personal and the historic, the modern and the mythic. Berry imagines the transatlantic journeys of John James Audubon and reveals his own heartfelt experience moving from his first house. Accessible, immediate, and visceral, The Sphere of Birds offers a musicality that is increasingly rare in contemporary poetry.

Wiki-Week at Queens College (4th annual edit-a-thon!)

We are excited to invite announce that the Queens College Libraries will be holding a series of virtual edit-a-thons on the week of March 21. This will be our fourth annual edit-a-thon, and the second to be held virtually.   

An edit-a-thon is an event where participants come together to edit Wikipedia.  

This is for both complete newcomers and experienced Wikipedians. If you’ve never edited an article before, don’t worry! This is a friendly and approachable way to begin. Instruction and assistance are provided; we will teach you how to make edits and how to make your edits stick.  

On the week of March 21, the library will host two edit-a-thons; please feel free to attend one or both! Each meeting will have a different theme, but of course, if you have begun to edit an article in the first event, you can always continue it in the second. 

The details are as follows: 

  • QC Wiki-Week: Edit-a-thon Part I (The Civil Rights Movement in New York) 
    • Monday, March 21
    • 4:00-6:00 PM 

  • QC Wiki-Week: Edit-a-thon Part II (Monuments, Landmarks, and Public Art in Queens) 
    • Wednesday, March 23 
    • 12:00-3:00 PM 

We hope to see you there! While we can’t offer free refreshments in this online format, we can offer support and good company as we edit and create articles. Anyone from inside or outside the Queens College community is invited – faculty, students, staff, and others.   

Celebrating Diversity: Women’s History Month Resources 

Resources for Women’s History Month by Nancy Foasberg, Librarian for Women and Gender Studies 

The QC Library celebrates Women’s History Month in March by gathering and presenting resources related to a specific aspect of women’s history.  Last year’s guide focused on women’s suffrage and voting rights, a theme designated by the National Women’s History Alliance.  

The Women’s History Month 2022 guide features resources related to the history of reproductive rights.  While not only women need access to reproductive health care, the history of reproductive rights is essential to women’s history.

We also acknowledge the reproductive rights of transgender people and plan to highlight resources related to transgender health care in a future guide. 

The guide covers a broad range of issues related to reproductive rights, including abortion, birth control, sex education, childbirth practices, and coercive “population control.”  

Documentary film:The Abortion Hotline(2016). In Chile, where abortion remains illegal and punishable by imprisonment, we follow a group of young activists who put their lives at risk to run an underground abortion hotline. 

Book: Reproductive Rights and the State: Getting the Birth Control, RU-48, and the Gardasil Vaccine to the U.S. Market  (2013). Reproductive Rights and the State: Getting the Birth Control, RU-486, and Morning-After Pills and the Gardasil Vaccine to the U.S. Market tackles a subject that remains controversial more than 60 years after “the pill”; was approved for use in the United States. The first book to examine the politicization of the FDA approval process for reproductive drugs, this study maps the hard-fought battles over the four major drugs currently on the U.S. market.

Book: Three Generations, No Imbeciles: Eugenics, the Supreme Court, and Buck v Bell (2010). “Three generations of imbeciles are enough.” Few lines from Supreme Court opinions are as memorable as this declaration by Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. in the landmark 1927 case Buck v. Bell. The ruling allowed states to forcibly sterilize residents in order to prevent “feebleminded and socially inadequate” people from having children. Though Buck set the stage for more than sixty thousand involuntary sterilizations in the United States and was cited at the Nuremberg trials in defense of Nazi sterilization experiments, it has never been overturned.

Book: The Search for an Abortionist: The Classic Study of How American Women Coped with Unwanted Pregnancy before Roe v. Wade (2014, reprinted from 1973). This eye-opening look at the abortion process prior to the Supreme Court’s landmark Roe v. Wade decision of 1973 is now more relevant than ever, with a new introduction by the author revisiting history that is still salient half a century later.

Primary Source Collection: Reproductive Rights: U.S. Supreme Court Cases. A list of significant cases of national prominence over the years. There are cases involving the reproductive rights of individuals, including the right to use contraception, plan a family, rear children, and gain access to reproductive healthcare. This site links to the full text of the U.S. Supreme Court decisions.