Media Mentions

Newton Writers Reflect on 50 Years of ‘Our Bodies, Ourselves’

By Julie M. Cohen | Newton Tab |

In 1973, Simon & Schuster published the first commercial edition … and by 1976, it was “recognized by the American Library Association’s Young Adult Service Division as one of the best books of the decade,” according to the website.

Carried in many schools and libraries (including the Newton Free Library) across the country, Swenson said “It was the most stolen book they ever had” and was a target for censorship by conservative figures including lawyer Phyllis Schlafly and televangelist Jerry Falwell.

Read the full story: Newton … More

Our Bodies, Ourselves Was a Radical Manual for a Generation of Women. In the Era of Misinformation, We Need It More Than Ever

By Dayna Evans | Glamour |

In a time when “wellness” has become synonymous with “health,” it’s not difficult to wonder why a book dedicated to bringing rigorous, collaborative, untainted medical information to women would be phased out. What good is a resource like Our Bodies, Ourselves when the whole Internet—from brand-commissioned “studies” on women’s health to the omnipresence of WebMD to the hugely profitable wellness “space”—exists at our fingertips?

Read the full story: Our Bodies, Ourselves Was a Radical Manual for a Generation of Women. In the Era of Misinformation, We Need … More

Our Bodies Ourselves Today Project

Panelists at the May 10, 2019 celebration of Our Bodies Ourselves include, from l – r: Suffolk student Sabrina Dias, Suffolk student Queen-Cheyenne Wade, OBOS board member Mariya Patwa, OBOS founder Norma Swenson, OBOS founder Miriam Hawley, and host and moderation Amy Agigian, founder and director of Suffolk University’s Center for Women’s Health and Human Rights.

On May 10, 2019, three generations of feminists came together to celebrate the legacy of Our Bodies Ourselves (OBOS) and look forward to the future of women’s … More

Boston Sunday Review: Judy Norsigian

By Mat Schaffer | WBZ Boston |

In this podcast, OBOS cofounder Judy Norsigian talks about the fight for women’s reproductive rights in the United States and how recent court decisions make the struggle to uphold Roe v. Wade particularly important today. 

Listen to the full story: Boston Sunday Review: Judy Norsigian

American Journal of Public Health: Our Bodies Ourselves

By multiple authors | American Journal of Public Health |

The June 2019 issue of the American Journal of Public Health (AJPH) features reflections by cofounder Judy Norsigian on the women’s health movement and Our Bodies Ourselves, as well as comments from Cynthia Pearson of the National Women’s Health Network, David Sundwall, a physician and public health advocate, and students in the AJPH Think Tank.

The articles are available to read at the AJPH website:

Remembering The Meeting 50 Years Ago That Led To ‘Our Bodies, Ourselves’

By Miriam Hawley with Dave deBronkart | WBUR |

This is how movements get started: There’s a little conversation here, and another in another community, and people get connected somehow — it almost happens spontaneously, as different people find themselves asking, “What’s going on here???” and start thinking new things. The time was right for us to be talking about how we were treated as women.

Out of those conversations, in the spring of 1969, we set up the first women’s conference at Emmanuel College. For my contribution, I put together a workshop titled … More

America’s Leaders Need Sex Ed

By Lauren Kelley | The New York Times |

As members of the anti-abortion movement have sought increasingly extreme restrictions on the procedure — and have rolled back access to contraception and other health services — their justifications have become further removed from science and fact. It would be naïve to think that giving every elected official a copy of “Our Bodies, Ourselves” would change that.

But facts do still matter. And it sure wouldn’t hurt for more people in power to learn about the bodies they’re trying to regulate.

Read the full story: More

From Mowing the Grass to Cutting the Flesh: How Young Women Learn to Hate their Genitals

By Rebecca Gordon | Common Dreams |

If we were sometimes silly, we were also wise enough to know that understanding and taking control of our bodies was a first step to taking control of our lives. In 1973, the Boston Women’s Health Book Collective turned its 193-page, 75-cent pamphlet “Women and Their Bodies” into the book Our Bodies, Ourselves, and for the first time, women all over the United States could read about our own mysterious inner (and outer) workings.

Read the full story: From Mowing the Grass to Cutting the Flesh: … More

Who Is A Radical Feminist?

By Kira Yates | The Lilith Blog |

She [author Joyce Antler] spoke to some of the highlights of her forthcoming book [“Jewish Radical Feminism: Voices From the Women’s Liberation Movement”], and discussed the hidden Jewish identities of many radical feminists who defined the future of American feminism. The most surprising of this discussion? That eight of the nine original members of the “Our Bodies, Ourselves” collective were Jewish. Jewish identity was not overt in “Our Bodies, Ourselves” activism, nor was it a discussion piece in most of the women’s liberation movement. Nevertheless, … More