Image credit: Timothy Lee
Meehan Crist, writer in residence in Biological Sciences, recently hosted a special short series for the London Review of Books Podcast, Climate, Politics, and Procreation, exploring the intersection of the climate crisis and reproductive justice. Over four episodes she and her guests ask what it means to pursue reproductive justice in a rapidly warming world. What happens when environmental devastation gets linked to the size of human populations? How have population, procreation, and women’s bodies been thought of in the past, where are we today, and where we might be headed – for better or worse – in the future?
Episode one features activist and feminist scholar Loretta Ross, one of the co-creators of the Reproductive Justice framework, who has spent five decades deepening our understanding of the intersections of race, reproduction, and the politics of white nationalism. Episode two explores the dangers of biological determinism with evolutionary biologist and feminist scholar Banu Subramaniam. Episode three turns to writer and historian Alison Bashford to ask some hard questions about the history of population control and the enduring power of its critique. The series finishes up in episode four with feminist scholar Jade Sasser, exploring how relationships among the climate crisis, women’s bodies, and health are evolving as we head into an increasingly uncertain future.
Climate, Politics, and Procreation arose out of Crist's research for a nonfiction book based on her Winter Lecture for the London Review of Books, “Is It OK to Have a Child”? The book, which has been generously supported by grants from the Sloan Foundation and the Robert B. Silvers Foundation, will be published by Random House in the US, and Chatto & Windus in the UK, in early 2024.