In this op-ed, I discuss the roots in medieval science of Republican Senate candidate Todd Akin’s misguided assertion that the female body will try to “shut that whole thing down” in the case of “legitimate rape.” I examine different views of reproduction from the Middle Ages through the 19th century.

Read more in The New York Times.


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Jennifer Tucker is a historian who studies the interrelations of art and science, photography, and mass visual culture, with a specialization in 19th to mid-20th century British, U.S., and trans-Pacific history. The common threads in her diverse research fields are the dynamics of visual media in modern history, the nature of evidence, public perceptions and practices of history, and the interrelationships of science, technology, and the law.

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