Professor Kimball’s research interests include the histories of gender and sexuality and race and ethnicity in twentieth-century Latin America. Their book traces the history of unwanted pregnancy and abortion in Bolivia's highland cities of La Paz and El Alto between 1952 and 2010. Drawing on oral interviews and medical records, the book examines the history of reproductive health policy and provisioning alongside women’s personal experiences with unwanted pregnancy and abortion. It argues that women's experiences with unwanted pregnancy and abortion matter; this is true not only because these experiences shaped the evolution of policies and services on reproductive health but because they challenge common misperceptions about how women make decisions about their pregnancies. The book is entitled An Open Secret: The History of Unwanted Pregnancy and Abortion in Modern Bolivia, and is available from Rutgers University Press.

Professor Kimball participates in movements supporting women’s reproductive rights and health in the U.S. and Latin America and conceives of themself as a “scholactivist,” or a scholar committed to linking their work to social justice activism.


Ph.D., University of Pittsburgh

M.A., University of Pittsburgh

B.A., University of Washington

Scholarship / Publications

An Open Secret: The History of Unwanted Pregnancy and Abortion in Modern Bolivia, Rutgers University Press (New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, 2020).

“The Landscape of Unwanted Pregnancy and Abortion in Highland Bolivia, 1982-2010,” in Transcending Borders: Abortion in the Past and Present, eds. Shannon Stettner, Katrina Ackerman, Kristen Burnett, and Travis Hay (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), 205-220.

Book review, A History of Family Planning in Twentieth-Century Peru, by Raúl Necochea López, Bulletin of the History of Medicine, Vol. 90, No. 2 (Summer 2016), 355-356.

“Bibliografía sobre el embarazo no deseado y aborto en Bolivia” (“Review of literature on unwanted pregnancy and abortion in Bolivia”) in Fuentes: Revista de la Biblioteca y Archivo Histórico de la Asamblea Legislativa Plurinacional (Sources: The Journal of the Historical Library and Archive of the Plurinational Legislative Assembly) Vol. IX, No. 40 (October 2015), 17-21.

“Una colección para el estudio médico sobre las mujeres” (“A Useful Collection for the Study of Women’s Reproductive History”), La Razón newspaper (6 December 2009), La Paz, Bolivia: Section C8.