Managing and Monitoring the Menopausal Body

52 Pages Posted: 20 Dec 2021 Last revised: 18 Jan 2022

See all articles by Naomi Cahn

Naomi Cahn

University of Virginia School of Law

Bridget J. Crawford

Pace University School of Law

Emily Gold Waldman

Pace University - School of Law

Date Written: December 17, 2021

Abstract

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

Cahn, Naomi R. and Crawford, Bridget J. and Waldman, Emily Gold, Managing and Monitoring the Menopausal Body (December 17, 2021). University of Chicago Legal Forum, Forthcoming, Virginia Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper No. 2022-06, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3988196

Naomi R. Cahn (Contact Author)

University of Virginia School of Law ( email )

580 Massie Road
Charlottesville, VA 22903
United States

Bridget J. Crawford

Pace University School of Law ( email )

78 North Broadway
White Plains, NY 10603
United States

Emily Gold Waldman

Pace University - School of Law ( email )

78 North Broadway
White Plains, NY 10603
United States

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