Period: The Real Story of Menstruation

Princeton Univ. Apr. 2023. 8 hrs. ISBN 9780691251073. $27.95. SCI
Although it is a common experience for over half the world’s population, discussion of menstruation is still viewed as inappropriate in many cultures. In this rigorous yet accessible study, anthropologist Clancy (Univ. of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) breaks the silence about periods, debunks menstrual myths, clearly presents the science behind menstruation, and shares a path toward a more equitable future for all. Listeners will learn exactly what occurs in the ovaries and uterus during the menstrual cycle, and that most common knowledge about the menstrual cycle is false (e.g., that a “normal” cycle is 28 days, with ovulation on day 14). Research in both biology and anthropology is presented alongside anecdotal stories about everything from menarche to menopause, and Clancy is careful to use accurate and inclusive language, specifically highlighting the experiences of trans men and nonbinary people throughout. The author narrates this debut, and her enthusiasm for the topic shines. Note that there are occasional variations in the volume, and parts of the recording have an echo that detracts from the content.
VERDICT This illuminating, explicitly feminist study will provide listeners with a more accurate understanding of the menstrual cycle, as well as ideas for improving menstrual health on a global scale.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing