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Bi-Weekly Sexual Freedom Newsletter
Wednesday, October 30, 2019


Top Stories This Week

1. The intersections of sex work and art work; 
2. Restorative justice as a response to sexual violence;
3. PrEP without a prescription;
4. Chanel Miller’s memoir;
5. Miscarriages;
6. Why more Black women are dying from endometrial cancer; 
7. Fighting for the future of our planet and reproductive justice. 

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(Ramona Slick)

When sex work and art work collide (Chicago Reader) 

S. Nicole Lane insists that we conceptualize sex work beyond mainstream portrayals of “a monolithic culture of human trafficking and abuse,” to think of sex work in the context of art and creativity: “It is, of course, imperative to acknowledge that all sex workers have different backgrounds, and that not everyone comes into—or out of—sex work with a creative lens. But it is essential to understand that sex work exists all around us (and it can exist consensually) in order to normalize and decriminalize stigmas and taboos. [...] The solidarity between those in the sex industry and artists is still prevalent in 2019 and reshapes how we think about the exchange of labor, queering the body, and how the art market is influenced by sex, power, and identity.” Read more.


(Anna North)

What’s next for #MeToo? This college might have the answer. (Vox) 

In response to sexual violence, The College of New Jersey is focusing on an “alternative resolution.” Anna North speaks with Chelsea Jacobym, TCNJ’s Title IX coordinator: “The process is based on the principles of restorative justice, an approach that focuses on repairing the harm done to a survivor rather than on assigning punishment to a perpetrator. At TCNJ, the process starts with a question, Jacoby said: What would the perpetrator ‘need to hear, see, complete, or do, to recognize and acknowledge the potential harm, and for that to potentially be repaired?’” Read more.



PrEP Without a Prescription Could Save Lives, But It’s Still Not Enough (them.) 

While PrEP without a prescription is certainly a step in the right direction, Steven Blum argues that it’s not enough: “Last week, in a move that was applauded by AIDS activists, California became the first state in the country to allow pharmacists to dispense PrEP without a doctor’s prescription, thus removing one massive hurdle preventing the drug’s widespread adoption. [...] But California faces a number of challenges in rolling out the landmark legislation. For one, the law can’t legally compel pharmacies to furnish PrEP to patients, and some pharmacists have already voiced their displeasure with the expansion in care.” Read more.



(Mariah Tiffany)

Victims Owe Us Nothing: Chanel Miller Reclaims Her Story and Identity in “Know My Name” (Bitch Media) 

To Caroline Reilly, Chanel Miller’s memoir is “singularly breathtaking, gut-wrenching, and affirming.” Reilly writes, “Know My Name allows readers to breathe in universal experiences, but Miller’s weaving of her day-to-day life with the lingering trauma of her assault also illustrates the singular way sexual-assault victims are asked to move through the world. They are tasked with carrying not only the weight of the violence they suffered, but the expectations imposed on victims, the conversations we have about sexual assault, and society’s repugnant insistence on holding steadfast to tropes about the ‘perfect’ victim.” Read more.


(Paulina Holma)

All the Pregnancies I Couldn’t Talk About (The Atlantic) 

Miscarriage, as Amy Webb notes, is a rarely discussed yet highly prevalent experience: “I’ve been pregnant nine times, and I have one child. For years, I never told anyone about my miscarriages, because as a professional American woman, I’d been indoctrinated to mute the implications of my gender. I should never hint at the idea that my body is capable of reproduction or that I might someday want to start a family. In a business setting, I learned that the mere mention of pregnancy could mean losing a potential client, or being passed over for a promotion or project. This wasn’t merely anecdotal. I observed it firsthand, many times.”
Read more.



Why Are More Black Women Dying From the Most Common Reproductive Cancer? (Mother Jones) 

While Black women are just as likely to get endometrial cancer—the most common form of reproductive cancer—as white women, they are more likely to die from it. Rosa Furneaux consults Dr. Rodney Rocconi and Dr. Kemi Doll for possible explanations of this discrepancy: “Both researchers believe epigenetics, the idea that social, economic, and cultural inequalities can alter our DNA, might also have a role in explaining why more black women are dying from endometrial cancer. [...] In other words, black women’s genes may predispose them to aggressive endometrial cancer. But those genes have been influenced by generations of inequality.” Read more.


(Spencer Platt:Getty Images)

Fighting for the Future of Our Planet Is Reproductive Justice (Rewire.News) 

To Bailey Borchardt, the fight for the future of our planet and the fight for reproductive justice are inextricable: “One of the fundamental pillars of reproductive justice (a framework developed by SisterSong) is the right of anyone to start and raise their family in safe, sustainable communities. Yet so many people of color do not have access to this right because of environmental racism. For progress to occur, everyone advocating for access to sexual and reproductive health care and those fighting for environmental justice needs to uplift the work and priorities of Black people, indigenous people, and other people of color.” Read more.


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