This discussion piece reflects on menstrual cycle research since the founding of the Society for Menstrual Cycle Research in the context of contemporary research presented in this special issue of Sex Roles. Although women researchers in the 19th century began documenting that normal menstruation is neither disabling nor dangerous, taboos, concealment and avoidance of menstruation persist. Feminist researchers have worked to find ways to support women’s health and wellbeing within a sociocultural milieu still reflecting largely negative views of menstrual cycle phenomena. The present collection of current menstrual cycle research offers useful contextual approaches to understanding why menstruation remains in the shadows, and how to resist negative characterizations, as well as encourage curiosity and body awareness. Alternatives to mainstream corporate and medical views of menstrual phenomena are discussed. Fruitful theoretical and methodological directions for research are identified to support advocacy, educational, and therapeutic interventions for menstrual health.
Sex Roles – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 1, 2012
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