New story up at Pacific Standard:
In July of 2010, newspapers in Ghana published a “Wanted” poster featuring the face of a quiet-looking man in his sixties with rimless glasses, sideswept hair, and a deeply lined forehead. The image bore a striking resemblance to flyers used by radical anti-abortion groups in the United States to harass abortion providers—posters one U.S. court found to be tantamount to a death threat. The man was James Phillips, a demographer and professor at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health. For more than a decade, from 1993 to 2005, Phillips had spent time working on public-health issues in the town of Navrongo, in Ghana’s rural, traditionalist Upper East Region near the border of Burkina Faso.
Although it wasn’t clear at the time, the attack on Phillips marked the beginning of a new anti-contraception movement—conceived in the U.S., but unfolding in Africa, where women’s frustrations with the dearth of safe, effective family planning options are being co-opted and repurposed by a corner of the Christian right.