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Reproductive and Sexual Health Rights

Since antiquity, cultures have developed and adopted technology and practices to promote or inhibit reproduction in response to their sociophysical environments and needs. Although most cultures have historically been pronatalist, this attitude has been highly dependent on intersections of class, race, ethnicity, age, sexual orientation, and disability, among others. The inherently iniquitous nature of society along these interstices has meant that reproductive rights, despite their fundamental nature, have not been a universal phenomenon. Even in the 20th century, the focus on women's reproductive health issues was more demographic than human rights–oriented. The language of reproductive “rights” is relatively new, owing its birth to the U.S. civil rights movements of the 1960s leading to the “sexual revolution” that gave women more freedom regarding their reproductive and ...

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