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Cartoonist Signe Wilkinson Talks About Depicting Abortion on Ladies First

Taylor talks to long-time cartoonist Signe Wilkinson about depicting a controversial topic like abortion and about being a female cartoonist in general. A Pulitzer-Prize-winner, Wilkinson has captured the idiosyncrasies, absurdities, and the bigotry — particularly the misogyny — that has shaped American politics for decades. Wilkinson is also an advocate for free speech.

Some of Signe Wilkinson’s Work & Responses:

  • Wilkinson, Signe. “Untitled.” Philadelphia Daily News (12 Mar. 1993) (p. 24)
    • Shutters, Tim. “Letters.” Philadelphia Daily News (24 Mar. 1993) (p. 23)
  • Wilkinson, Signe. “Editorial Cartoon: Court packing.” The Philadelphia Inquirer (20 Oct. 2020)
  • Wilkinson, Signe. “Political Cartoon: Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation halo.” The Philadelphia Inquirer (22 Oct. 2020)
  • Wilkinson, Signe. “Abortion Restrictions.” Truthdig (13 April 2016)

Sources:

  • Acevedo, Z. “Abortion in early America.” Women Health, vol. 4, #2 (Summer 1979)
  • Athena, Ailia. “Motherhood, the Sychroblog.” Blog — Paleothea: the Ancient Goddess (2008)
  • Bassett, Laura. “Anti-Abortion Leader Emerges As White Nationalist.” HuffPost (2018)
  • Blackman, Jeremy and Bureau, Austin. “Texas abortion clinics brace for near shutdown as new law is enacted: ‘We have to comply’.” Houston Chronicle (2021)
  • Blair, Gabrielle. “Men Cause 100% of Unwanted Pregnancies.” Human Parts — Medium (2018)
  • Blakemore, Erin. “The Criminalization of Abortion Began as a Business Tactic.” History (2019)
  • Boggioni, Tom. “Anti-choice advocate admits to Joy Reid her ultimate goal is to make birth control illegal.” Raw Story (2017)
  • Cavna, Michael. “‘I’m very angry that this is happening again’: Cartoonists compare drawing for Kavanaugh and Thomas hearings.” The Washington Post (2018)
  • Darkwater, Kieryn. “I Was Trained for the Culture Wars in Home School, Awaiting Someone Like Mike Pence as a Messiah.” Autostraddle (2017)
  • Donegan, Moria. “Feminists warned about America’s abortion crisis for years. We were written off as hysterical.” The Guardian (2021)
  • Donegan, Moira. “Not sure that corporate boycotts are the best measure of an issue’s salience, but I agree with this piece’s suggestion that broadly speaking, sexism provokes less of an outraged response from the American left than other kinds of bigotry.” @MoiraDonegan — Twitter (2021)
  • Donegan, Moira. “The US supreme court is deciding more and more cases in a secretive ‘shadow docket’.” The Guardian (2021)
  • Ehrenriech, Barbara and English, Deirdre. Witches, Midwives, and Nurses: A History of Women Healers. The Feminist Press (1973)
  • Fadiman, Dorothy. When Abortion Was Illegal: Untold Stories. Concentric Media (1992)
  • Federici, Silvia. Caliban and the Witch: Women, The Body and Primitive Accumulation. Autonomedia (2004)
  • Greenhouse, Linda. “The Sound of Silence on Abortion.” The New York Times (2021)
  • Herold, Steph. “From Ordinary to Extraordinary: Putting the “Shrill” Abortion Scene in Context.” Ms. Magazine (2019)
  • King, Colbert I. “Opinion: Hillary Clinton warned us this day would come.” The Washington Post (2021)
  • Ladd, Chris. “The article removed from Forbes, “Why White Evangelicalism Is So Cruel”.” Political Orphans (2018)
  • Lynn, Samara. “ABORTION BANS ARE A HEALTH CRISIS. FOR BLACK WOMEN, THEY MEAN DEVASTATION.” Black Enterprise (2019)
  • Macionis, John J. Society: The Basics (Seventh Edition). Pearson Education (2003) (p. 180)
  • Martina, Nina (ProPublica) and Belluz, Julia (Vox). “The Extraordinary Danger of Being Pregnant and Uninsured in Texas.” ProPublica and Vox (2019)
  • McFadden, Robert D. “Norma McCorvey, ‘Roe’ in Roe v. Wade, Is Dead at 69.” The New York Times (2017)
  • Paquette, Danielle. “A late-night, backseat Cadillac ride with Gloria Steinem.” The Washington Post (2015)
  • Rourke, Mark and Reyes, Emily Alpert. “Norma McCorvey, once-anonymous plaintiff in landmark Roe vs. Wade abortion case, dies at 69.” Los Angeles Times (2017)
  • Traister, Rebecca. “Our Fury Over Abortion Was Dismissed for Decades As Hysterical.” The Cut (2019)
  • V (formerly Eve Ensler). “Disaster patriarchy: how the pandemic has unleashed a war on women.” The Guardian (2021)
  • Voss, Gretchen. “”I Was Forced to Get Pregnant”.” Redbook (2011)
  • Witchel, Alex. “AT HOME WITH: Norma McCorvey; Of Roe, Dreams And Choices.” The New York Times (1994)

Credits:

  • Created/Written/Edited/Hosted by Kori and Taylor
  • Sound Design/Music/Production by Kori 
  • Research by Taylor 
  • Graphic Design by Kori 
  • Produced by The Fandomentals Network

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Author

  • Taylor is a writer who will always jump at the chance to blur genres. So obviously she can't pick just one to fangirl over. Though if she had to choose, she would narrow it down to science fiction and fantasy. Currently, she is most interested in women-centric stories and the depiction of trauma in media. She is also an aspiring YA novelist and aspiring Taylor Swift scholar.

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