The questions that have animated the women's health movement for the last half‐century—questions of autonomy, expertise, authority—appear to be bubbling up again on social media, as feminist health journalists, celebrity gynecologists, and wellness moguls once again debate the role of health and medicine in women's lives. The tensions inherent in these debates were nicely captured when journalist Jennifer Block published her commentary titled “Doctors Are Not Gods” in Scientific America at the end of November 2019—and put Twitter's favorite gynecologist Dr Jennifer Gunter in her crosshairs. Few anticipated the mayhem that ensued. To recap, feminist health journalist Jennifer Block argued that Dr Jennifer Gunter—with her New York Times column on women's health, her best‐selling book “The Vagina Bible,” and her robust online following—had crossed a line from friendly Twitter gyno to Internet bully. Block accused Gunter (and, broadly, medical professionals) of “gaslighting” women who partake in the wellness movement. In the hasty, arm wrestling that ensued what was lost was more than just another squabble over Gweneth Paltrow's GOOP and whether or not those jade eggs belong in women's vaginas. Instead, the rancor that has accompanied debates about conventional medicine versus the wellness movement has foreclosed the opportunity to engage in a broader discussion about the role of women's experience in women's health, and what is at stake when women do not feel heard.
Birth: Issues in Perinatal Care
Open Access Status
Natalie Jolly (2020) Why are Women Buying GOOP? Women's Health and the Wellness Movement. Birth: Issues in Perinatal Care. 47(3): 254-256