After graduating from Human Sciences in 2017 and Medical Anthropology in 2018 at Oxford University, Abby went back to Scotland to start her PhD at the University of Glasgow. She is passionate about reproductive health.
Understanding successful ageing in women: How do socioeconomic and cultural factors shape diversity in menopause experience?
Throughout female reproductive life history there is great disparity between what is known about its beginning and what is known about its end. Menopause is systematically excluded from biomedical and public health discourses of ageing despite its significant role in female ageing experience. Evolutionary theory posits the hypothesis that poor socioeconomic status can cause a ‘fast reproductive life history’ strategy to be exhibited in humans. This suggests that menopause, as a component of female reproductive life history, would be affected by socioeconomic status, resulting in variation of when and how menopause is experienced. Differences in menopause experience have also been recognised across cultures, emphasising menopausal experience as being a complex biocultural process. This mixed-methods project aims to comprehensively study menopause and its role in ageing: to understand how socioeconomic status may affect menopausal experience; and to understand the cultural determinants of menopausal experience. The current limitations within public health ageing discourse will be critically analysed with a view to inform the discipline that menopause should be considered as a significant phenomenon in female ageing."