Large challenge, visiting the Jan Cunen museum, Thursday dec 4th.
For my second challenge I visited a museum. The Jan Cunen museum is a rather small one located in the centre of Oss. There were 3 exhibitions on display, all themed around ‘powervrouwen’. There was one section on birth control pills whereas the others were dedicated to female artists. For this particular blog I will focus on the birth control exhibition.
The invention of the birth control pill is one of the big inventions of the 20th century that changed society. It separated sexual intercourse from reproduction, drastically changing the personal lives of people all over the world. When ‘the pill’ was first introduced in 1962 there was a lot of controversy around it. Especially in religious circles birth control methods didn’t receive a warm welcome. The pill was no exception to this. The international pharmaceutics industry even sent adversaries tot he Vatican with the mission to make birth control pills accepted. As it gradually did more and more people started using them. Later, in 1968, pope Paulus VI declared the pills prohibited, but by then it
had already made its way into everyday life. By then most men of the cloth had accepted birth control, claiming it was a thing between the user and God.
The introduction of the birth control pill also gave feminist groups renewed motivation. In Holland the slogan ‘baas in eigen buik’ (literally boss in own belly) was used when the feminist movement ‘Dolle Mina’ demonstrated to get birth control to be a part of basic healthcare insurance.
Personally I birth control is a good thing. Apart from the fact that I’m not a religious man, I think birth control is a good thing. The world’s population is growing fast enough as it is. Besides, I think people should have control over where, when and with whom they want to get children.