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'Austerity, Experimentation and Opposition: The Global and Local Politics of Biomedical Contraception in Uganda'
Doreen Kembabazi (Warwick University)

In 1957, American physician, eugenicist and heir to Proctor and Gamble, Clarence Gamble teamed up with medics and women activists in Uganda to found the Family Planning Association of Uganda. In this article, I examine how a global idea; that modern contraception could prevent what was perceived to be one of the greatest threats to humanity – global overpopulation – was re-imagined and contested in the former British colony of Uganda, which only few decades earlier had suffered a devastating population decline. I show how various actors – medical workers, women’s rights activists, politicians, and self-styled representatives of the ‘common man’ responded to and confronted global narratives about overpopulation.    

Dr Kembabazi is assistant professor of African History at the University of Warwick, UK. She holds a PhD from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA. A native of East Africa, Dr Kembabazi has an extensive teaching career that began in 2006 in East Africa and continued to be nurtured in the USA and Europe where she has taught African and European history. Her research addresses the themes of political culture, nationalism, state violence, ethnicity, civil society, slavery, gender and sexuality, medicine and public health, urbanization, and cosmopolitanism.

The seminar in the History of Science, Medicine, and Technology is convened by Alex Aylward (University of Oxford), Hohee Cho (Wolfson College), Mark Harrison (Green Templeton College), Catherine Jackson (Harris Manchester College), and Sloan Mahone (University of Oxford)