Ellen Leopold

Ellen Leopold is the author of A Darker Ribbon: Breast Cancer, Women, and Their Doctors in the Twentieth Century.

Recent Articles

Shopping for the Cure

M illions of American women are now running, swimming, and climbing for breast cancer, raising extraordinary sums of money for charities whose workings they know almost nothing about. This odd throwback to the earliest breast cancer fundraising campaigns of the 1930s may go unnoticed because the outward appearances are so radically changed. But although spandex and sweatbands have replaced white gloves and hats, and biking has replaced baking, women are once again donating their time, energy, and money, no questions asked . The Race for the Cure, one of the oldest of these athletic events, is run by the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, a nonprofit organization set up to fight breast cancer in 1982. In 1998, the most recent year for which figures are publicly available, it raised over $54 million in 85 separate races. (This is a gross number. Komen will not say how much of this amount went to fundraising expenses and how much to breast cancer causes.) Joining the bandwagon in...