Design History Dissertation
The design of the ‘faux period’, in the contraceptive pill and what it tells us about attitudes to menstruation in the 1960s and the 2000s.
‘No woman would menstruate if she did not have to’ - Germaine Greer, 1971 In 2019, The Guardian published an article on the contraceptive pill’s unnecessary need for a menstrual bleed as part of its design and function. It was reported that the pill was originally designed to include a ‘faux period’, so that it would appease the catholic church by mimicking the menstrual cycle (The Guardian, 2019). This article highlighted that some British users of the oral contraceptive felt that they had been misled through the design of the contraceptive pill into the ‘unnecessary’ and ‘inconvenient’ experience of menstruating each month. Meanwhile, across the Atlantic in the USA, a pill under the brand name Seasonique had been licensed in 2006 which avoided that monthly ‘inconvenience’ and reduced menstruating to a quarterly experience. While I do not intend to create a linear narrative of ...Download Part 1.pdfDownload Part 2.pdf