Marginalized and Monitored: Analyzing Reproductive Health and Digital Surveillance in the United States

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Proudman, Rachel


Hoffman, David
Dellinger, Jolynn

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This thesis delves into the complex and intersectional issues surrounding women’s reproductive rights in the United States, with a specific focus on the impact of restrictive abortion legislation after the overturning of Roe v. Wade in the Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization Supreme Court decision. The research highlights the disproportionate effects of such restrictions on marginalized communities and exposes the systemic racism and classism embedded in abortion legislation.

Furthermore, this thesis examines the intersection of data privacy and reproductive rights, exploring how recent changes in abortion laws have impacted the privacy of women seeking abortion-related services. The study focuses on the potential impact of post-Roe legislation on data privacy, specifically on the surveillance and targeting of women seeking reproductive health resources. The research was conducted using an online survey that targeted women, aged 18 to 40, in Florida, Texas, and Georgia, examining their attitudes towards data privacy, awareness of existing abortion legislation, and access to various reproductive health services. The survey results indicate a disconnect between participants’ expressed concern about data privacy and their actual behavior, which is particularly alarming given the risks women face with changing restrictive abortion laws. Furthermore, the study highlights the lack of awareness and understanding of abortion laws in their respective states. Ultimately, the research stresses the urgent need to address data privacy concerns and provides recommendations for policymakers and technology companies to safeguard the privacy and autonomy of women seeking abortion-related services. To address these findings, I recommend increased education and awareness campaigns to empower women with knowledge about their legal rights and resources for reproductive healthcare services, ensuring that they can make informed decisions about their bodies and their data.




Data privacy, Reproductive rights, Abortion--Government policy--United States



Proudman, Rachel (2023). Marginalized and Monitored: Analyzing Reproductive Health and Digital Surveillance in the United States. Honors thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from

Dukes student scholarship is made available to the public using a Creative Commons Attribution / Non-commercial / No derivative (CC-BY-NC-ND) license.