Aiken, Abigail, Alejandra Tello-Pérez, Melissa Madera, Jennifer E. Starling, Dana Johnson, Kathleen Broussard, Elisa Padron, Carol Armelle Ze-Noah, and James Scott. 2023. JAMA Network Open 6(4):e238701
Assistant Professor of Sociology, University of South Carolina
Hi there! I am an Assistant Professor of Sociology at the University of South Carolina. Prior to joining UofSC, I completed my Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of Texas at Austin, where I was a fellow at the Population Research Center. My research interests include sexual and reproductive health, social demography, fertility, gender, and health policy.
My sole-authored paper in Social Science & Medicine analyzes the narratives of 68 women living in two countries where abortion access was highly restricted (Ireland and Northern Ireland). These women either left the country to receive clinic-based care or obtained medications through informal channels to self-manage an abortion at home. In this work, I situate self-managed abortion within the continuum of (de)medicalization and reveal the ways medical technology and healthcare provision shape individual perceptions and beliefs about pain, the body, and the environment where care is received.
My work also appears in Population Studies, JAMA Network Open, Contraception, American Journal of Public Health, Perspectives on Sexual and Reproductive Health, American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, and BMJ Sexual and Reproductive Health. It has also been featured across major news outlets, including The New York Times and The Atlantic. In support of my research, I have received funding from the Society of Family Planning, the NICHD, and private foundations.
I have also contributed to three collaborative projects:
- Project SANA, a nationwide study of self-managed abortion
- Texas Policy Evaluation Project (TxPEP), which evaluates the impact of reproductive health legislation in Texas
- Tsogolo la Thanzi (TLT), a longitudinal study examining young young people's reproductive goals and behaviors amidst an AIDS epidemic in Southern Malawi.