Managing and Monitoring the Menopausal Body
2022 University of Chicago Legal Forum 41
Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper No. 2022-06
41 Pages Posted: 20 Dec 2021 Last revised: 1 May 2023
Date Written: December 17, 2021
This Essay explores how menopausal bodies are managed and monitored through both menopausal hormone therapy (MHT) and the burgeoning market for technology-driven menopause products and services. While each of these allegedly improves the menopause experience, a closer investigation reveals a more complex interaction of profit motives and traditional notions of gender identity. The Essay identifies problems with—and suggests some solutions for reforming—current practices of monitoring and managing the menopausal body.
Careful consideration of menopause brings this Essay into ongoing conversations about theorizing beyond the gender binary and stereotypical notions of femininity. Purveyors of both MHT and menopause-related digital products and services appeal to mostly cisgender women by emphasizing ideas of youthfulness, attractiveness, and sexual desirability. We locate these profit seekers within “menopause capitalism,” the marketing and selling of menopause-related products through messages that celebrate autonomy, community, or femininity from entities that are, at their core, commercial enterprises.
Keywords: health, menopause, gender, feminist legal theory, privacy
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation