Dispatches from the Abortion Wars
The Costs of Fanaticism to Doctors, Patients, and the Rest of Us
By Carole Joffe
(Beacon Press, Hardcover, 9780807035023, 208pp.)
Publication Date: January 2010
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Surprising firsthand accounts from the front lines of abortion provision reveal the persistent cultural, political, and economic hurdles to access
More than thirty-five years after women won the right to legal abortion, most people do not realize how inaccessible it has become. In these pages, reproductive-health researcher Carole Joffe shows how a pervasive stigma—cultivated by the religious right—operates to maintain barriers to access by shaming women and marginalizing abortion providers. Through compelling testimony from doctors, health-care workers, and patients, Joffe reports the lived experiences behind the polemics, while also offering hope for a more compassionate standard of women’s health care.
Carole Joffe is a professor at the Bixby Center for Global Reproductive Health at the University of California-San Francisco, and a professor emerita of sociology at the University of California-Davis. She is the author of several other books, including Doctors of Conscience.
“No one knows more about reproductive rights in the United States than Carole Joffe. This indispensable book . . . is both harrowing and galvanizing.”—Michelle Goldberg, author of The Means of Reproduction
“Terrific—clear, terse, and full of things you need to know.”—Katha Pollitt, author of Virginity or Death!
“Riveting. Joffe’s insights into popular culture, alongside her analysis of the recent barrage of ballot initiatives, are spot on in explaining the growth of negative attitudes about abortion.”—Eleanor J. Bader, Feminist Review
“Instructive and memorable.”—Emily Bazelon, Slate