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University of Michigan Law School

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Employees

2005

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"Has The Millennium Yet Dawned?": A History Of Attitudes Toward Pregnant Workers In America, Courtni E. Molnar Jan 2005

"Has The Millennium Yet Dawned?": A History Of Attitudes Toward Pregnant Workers In America, Courtni E. Molnar

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

This Article will focus on what might be considered the "prehistory" of the PDA in an attempt to shed new light on the equality/difference debate. Beginning as early as the nineteenth century, pregnant workers have been forced into either the equality approach or the difference approach depending mostly on race and class. This Article will show that, at times, both approaches restrained the autonomy of women and even caused harm to individual women and society by contributing to the development of the stereotypes and social attitudes that continue to permit pregnancy discrimination today.