Abortion and the Politics of Motherhood

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University of California Press, 1984 - History - 324 pages
In this important study of the abortion controversy in the United States, Kristin Luker examines the issues, people, and beliefs on both sides of the abortion conflict. She draws data from twenty years of public documents and newspaper accounts, as well as over two hundred interviews with both pro-life and pro-choice activists. She argues that moral positions on abortion are intimately tied to views on sexual behavior, the care of children, family life, technology, and the importance of the individual.


Medicine and Morality in the Nineteenth Century
The Century of Silence
The Professionals Dilemma
Women and the Right to Abortion
The Emergence of the RighttoLife Movement
World Views of the Activists
Motherhood and Morality in America
The Future of the Debate

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About the author (1984)

Kristin Luker is Professor of Law and Sociology at the University of California Berkeley School of Law (Boalt Hall). She is also the author of Dubious Conceptions: The Politics of Teenage Pregnancy (1996) and, with Jean Fox O'Barr, Feminism in Action: Building Institutions and Community through Women's Studies (1994).

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