Photo of participants listening to Price giving her presentation
Conceiving Equity 2023 featuring Dr. Kimala Price By Dr. Clare Daniel
On January 26, 2023, Newcomb Institute held its eleventh annual Roe v. Wade lecture, notably for the first time since that landmark court decision was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court in its decision of the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health case on June 24, 2022. Our speaker, Dr. Kimala Price (NC ’92), Professor and Chair of Women’s Studies at San Diego State University, spoke to a packed house about the implications of Dobbs for states where abortion is now banned, including Louisiana, and for our nation as a whole.
The Roe v. Wade lecture is part of Conceiving Equity, a yearly event that also showcases our Reproductive Rights and Reproductive Health interns’ work, and includes advocacy activities created by our reproductive rights, health, and justice-related student organizations. During a reception before Price’s lecture, attendees perused a poster gallery featuring the work of 18 interns who were placed in paid positions at organizations and with faculty members who work on reproductive rights, health, and justice.
Dr. Price’s lecture, “Reproductive Justice in a Post-Roe/Post-Dobbs World,” provided a powerful overview of our new political and social context. A renowned scholar of reproductive justice and author, Price first outlined the various ways that the right to abortion was restricted prior to the Dobbs decision, noting that 1,381 restrictive state laws had been passed since Roe v. Wade. She then explained that in this post-Dobbs world, more people seeking abortion will be crossing state borders, self-inducing pregnancy terminations, obtaining medication abortions, and coping with increased surveillance and pregnancy criminalization. She then outlined the history of the reproductive justice movement and one of its most important interventions into mainstream thinking on reproductive rights: that the right to not have children is fundamentally tied to the rights to have children and to parent them in safe and healthy environments. She illustrated this by pointing to racial disparities in maternal mortality and morbidity, noting that these disparities are likely to increase now that pregnant-capable people are denied their bodily autonomy.
In addition to the Conceiving Equity event, Dr. Price spent several days with Newcomb Institute, attending lunches with New Orleans community leaders, researchers, and students interested in reproductive justice. In all, students, faculty, staff, and community members benefited from the opportunity to join in conversation around the topic of reproductive justice at this crucial turning point in our nation’s history.