The Femtastic Podcast

The Femtastic Podcast

Katie Breen interviews feminist activists, researchers, and advocates working to make "women's issues"...well, non-issues. Femtastic explores issues of reproductive rights and health, progressive politics, gender equality, sexual violence, LGBTQ+ perspectives, racism, social justice, and more - examining topics through the lens of intersectional feminism and reproductive justice. We also laugh.


June 29, 2022 39 min

A raw, unedited, unproduced reaction episode to the Supreme Court's overturning of Roe v. Wade on June 24, 2022. Includes advice for how you can support abortion access and fight back, in both the short and the long term. The episode ends with a moment for reflection, featuring a song called "Animal" by Jean Rohe. In Jean's words, "'Animal' is a song about my own abortion experience, but ultimately much ...

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It’s no secret that our country’s gun laws are riddled with loopholes, but one is killing women specifically.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, murders linked to domestic violence have risen dramatically, up 58% in the last decade. Guns are the most common weapon abusers use to kill their partners, and victims are usually women. And many of these perpetrators are not even allowed to have guns in the first place.

Under federal l...

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Recently, Politico published a leaked draft Supreme Court opinion in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women's Health Organization case on the future of Roe v. Wade. Unsurprisingly for many in the reproductive rights community, Alito calls for the overturning of Roe

We know that overturning Roe will mean that millions of people of reproductive age will be without access to abortion care. But what does it look like when someone who otherw...

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In Part 2 of our 2-part series on the misleading practices of Crisis Pregnancy Centers, we delve into another misleading, yet surprisingly underreported, aspect of Crisis Pregnancy Centers (aka CPCs aka "fake clinics).

As we covered in Part 1, CPCs masquerade as if they are real health clinics - but because they are not, they're not subject to privacy laws like HIPPA that protect your personal health information. Of course,...

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Crisis pregnancy centers, or “CPCs,” are anti-abortion organizations that target pregnant people with predatory, deceptive marketing. They hide in plain sight by operating under the guise of offering comprehensive reproductive healthcare. Instead, they are religiously-affiliated, anti-abortion, and often unlicensed “medical” centers that, as stated by the California legislature, dissuade pregnant people from abortion through “inte...

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Back in early December 2021, you may have heard some rumblings celebrating that the FDA had changed some of its draconian and scientifically unsupported regulations around medication abortion. Medication abortion, a safe and legal method of first-trimester abortion, accounted for 54% of US abortions in 2020 but has been subject to decades of politically-motivated FDA regulations that placed strict and unnecessary controls on it to ...

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Today on the podcast is the Baltimore Abortion Fund (BAF), a grassroots nonprofit that provides financial support for people traveling to and living in Maryland who need abortion care, and as the Supreme Court decides in June on a case that threatens legal abortion like never before, they’re working to remove the financial barriers for those seeking abortion care. 

As of late 2021, 30% of BAF’s callers were already from out of sta...

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You've probably heard of the gender pay gap - the fact that, according to the most recent Census Bureau data from 2018, women of all races earned, on average, just 82 cents for every $1 earned by men of all races. Last week, Equal Pay Day was recognized on March 7 - this is the number of days into 2022 women would need to work to earn the equivalent of men in 2021.

Do you know how the gender pay gap may impact your earnings o...

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You may have heard that Texas enacted a six-week ban on abortion in 2021, and that other states have begun attempting to pass copycat laws. You also may have heard many people remarking that 6 weeks is "before many people even know they are pregnant." But do you know why that is? 

Dr. Lauren Ralph, Associate Professor in the Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health (ANSIRH) program at UCSF, recently published researc...

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February 22, 2022 48 min

It's Black History Month, and we're also in what may quite possibly the last few months of Roe v. Wade's existence as we know it. So it seems an important time to talk about what exactly Reproductive Justice means, the history of this Black women-led movement, and why it's so very important. 

Joining the podcast is Monica Simpson, Executive Director of *the* organization for the Repro Justice (RJ) movement, SisterSo...

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We know today that the religious right condemns abortion. But did you know just how recently they developed that opinion, and why?

Today on the podcast is Reverend Serene Jones, a pro-choice reverend, religious scholar, and the former chair of Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Yale University. She is a leader on progressive religious issues, including abortion.   Rev. Jones is an expert on how abortion and reproductive rights...
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If you have young people in your life, you may have asked yourself: how do I teach them to be feminists? How do I explain what feminism is and what it has to do with their lives? For young girls of color, how do I help them navigate the dual forces of racism and sexism?

Fortunately, there is a new book that can help.

Brittney Cooper, Susana M. Morris, and Chanel Craft Tanner are authors, activists, educators, and members of the Cru...

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January 11, 2022 43 min

We've heard a lot about the hypothetical harm of Texas' incredibly restrictive abortion bill, SB8, and how it is a glimpse into a post-Roe future. But we wanted to talk to someone on the ground in Texas who is seeing firsthand the impact this bill is having on Texans seeking abortions.

We're joined on the podcast today by Zaena Zamora, Executive Director of the Frontera Fund. The Frontera Fund makes abortion accessible ...

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The COVID-19 pandemic has driven up unemployment among women, and the situation is even worse for women of color. Between a lack of affordable childcare, women's caregiving roles in the home, and the fact that women disproportionately work in sectors negatively impacted by the pandemic, the short-term and long-term implications of the pandemic's effect on women's employment cannot be understated. The impact that women&#...

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As the topic of abortion rights is in the courts and in the press lately, one thing that we often miss is the question of what it actually means to have the choice of whether to obtain an abortion. 

Aside from whether abortion is actually legal where you live, what other barriers may exist that may prevent someone from being able to choose abortion in the first place? What obstacles, such as cost, ability to physically get to a cli...

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In the midst of nationwide abortion restrictions, one topic receiving a lot of attention is the idea of “mail-order” or telemedicine abortion. Previous Femtastic episodes have covered what medication abortion is and how you can access it in all 50 states through various channels. Today, we are talking to Hey Jane, one company providing telemedicine abortion in a few U.S. states (and hopefully more soon)!Hey Jane’s CEO Kiki Freedm...

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medical research gap: a disparity that exists because the vast majority of biological literature is based on single sex studies of males of European ancestry.

Did you know that it wasn't until 1993 that it was required for women to be included in clinical trials? Or that as of 2018, 78% of people included in key genomic research were of European ancestry?

The implications of gender and racial exclusion in medical and scientific...

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November 2, 2021 49 min

Enid Zentellis thought she knew everything about her Holocaust-surviving, Olympic swimming-qualifying, nudist Hungarian grandmother.  But when she discovered that she might have also been a spy for the Allies, it not only caused her to reconsider WWII history, it helped lift her out of her personal grief and helped to understand the power of individual resistance.

Today on the podcast is award-winning filmmaker and newly-minted pod...

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Today on the podcast is Kacie Willis, creator of the podcast You Heard Me Write," a Spotify Studios production. 

Kacie is an arts advocate who brings together Atlanta-based creatives from different disciplines and backgrounds through art. The series has amassed wide popularity, recently trending on Spotify because of its wildly creative, immersive format. Each episode features emerging writers, musicians, sound designers and d...

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This year marks the 100 year anniversary of the founding of the American Birth Control League, and while we've come a long way since then, fierce battles for reproductive rights are still being waged today. 

Today’s interview is with Planned Parenthood's North Central States CEO Sarah Stoesz, a fierce advocate of over 20 years who has been fighting for reproductive health access in a reliably conservative part of the countr...

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