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The high number of abortions worldwide can be partly explained by inappropriate and/or inaccessible means of contraception. Hardon attributes this to the way in which contraceptives are developed. Trials don’t match the reality for either users or providers, with researchers aiming for population control rather than safety or acceptability. Many women are the recipients of contraceptives they do not understand, which is a form of abuse. Talk of a pregnancy vaccine holds the potential for similar abuse. This article calls for less emphasis on family planning programmes and a starting base instead of women’s needs and desires, based on equality and choice.

This article is hosted by our co-publisher Taylor & Francis. For the full table of contents for this and previous issues of this journal, please visit the Gender and Development website.

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