Cover of Hot Flash by Emily Gold Waldman, Bridget J. Crawford, and Naomi R. Cahn
Hot Flash
How the Law Ignores Menopause and What We Can Do About It
Emily Gold Waldman, Bridget J. Crawford, and Naomi R. Cahn

October 2024
200 pages.

Hardcover ISBN: 9781503636606



More than half the population will experience menopause; it is time for the law to acknowledge it.

Menopause is a stage of life that half the population will inevitably experience. But it remains one of the last great taboo topics for discussion, even among close friends and family members. Silence and stigmas around many aspects of reproductive health—from menstruation to infertility to miscarriage to abortion—have historically created the conditions in which bias and discrimination can flourish. Menopause exemplifies that phenomenon, and in Hot Flash, authors Emily Gold Waldman, Bridget Crawford, and Naomi Cahn set out to replace the silence surrounding menopause with a deeper understanding.

Hot Flash explores the culturally specific stereotypes that surround menopause as well as how menopause is treated in law and medicine. The book contextualizes menopause as one of several stages in a person's reproductive life. Taking U.S. law regarding pregnancy and breastfeeding as an entry point, the authors suggest changes in existing legislation and workplace policies that would incorporate menopause as well. More broadly, they push us to imagine how law can support a more equitable future.

A broader framework further enables the authors to explore menopause discrimination as it is experienced by trans men and gender nonbinary people. They ultimately make the case for a new wave of intersectional feminism that encompasses gender, disability, age, and race.

About the authors

Emily Gold Waldman is the Associate Dean for Faculty Development and a Professor of Law at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University.

Bridget J. Crawford is a University Distinguished Professor at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University. She is the co-author, with Emily Gold Waldman, of Menstruation Matters (2022), among other publications.

Naomi R. Cahn is the Justice Anthony M. Kennedy Distinguished Professor of Law and Nancy L. Buc '69 Research Professor in Democracy and Equity at the University of Virginia School of Law. She is author of numerous books, including most recently, Fair Shake (2023).