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Sunday, November 10 • 2:30pm - 3:15pm
"I always wondered why we couldn't have more children": Women's Experiences of Infertility after the Shoah

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Dr. Peggy J. Kleinplatz is collaborating on an investigation of forced Nazi medical/pharmaceutical interventions against women during the Holocaust - without their knowledge, let alone their consent. The focus of the research is on the administration of substances to women which led to amenorrhea (abnormal absence of menstruation) and for some, infertility. Kleinplatz has been interviewing women in Canada, the US and Israel in Yiddish, English and Hebrew who have waited a lifetime to tell their stories of multiple miscarriages and infertility after the Shoah. Of the many women interviewed, 100% had ceased menstruation immediately after their arrival in the camps. Ironically, this history has been hidden in plain sight precisely because of the routine or even hidden nature of these medical interventions. Survivors were trying to make sense of a set of events that have barely been mentioned, let alone understood, in the history of the Holocaust. They have long hoped that someone would investigate their experiences and stop attributing their difficulties to "psychosomatic trauma" or prior malnutrition. It is time to give voice to women's narratives. This study has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany (“The Claims Conference”).

Speakers
avatar for Peggy Kleinplatz

Peggy Kleinplatz

Peggy J. Kleinplatz, Ph.D. is Professor of Medicine, and Director of Sex and Couples Therapy Training at the University of Ottawa. She is a clinical psychologist, Certified in Sex Therapy and Education.  Since 1983, she has been teaching Human Sexuality at the University of Ottawa... Read More →


Sunday November 10, 2019 2:30pm - 3:15pm
J130
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