1st Edition

In Search of Common Ground on Abortion
From Culture War to Reproductive Justice

ISBN 9781472420466
Published March 12, 2014 by Routledge
198 Pages

USD $58.95

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Book Description

This book brings together academics, legal practitioners and activists with a wide range of pro-choice, pro-life and other views to explore the possibilities for cultural, philosophical, moral and political common ground on the subjects of abortion and reproductive justice more generally. It aims to rethink polarized positions on sexuality, morality, religion and law, in relation to abortion, as a way of laying the groundwork for productive and collaborative dialogue. Edited by a leading figure on gender issues and emerging voices in the quest for reproductive justice - a broad concept that encompasses the interests of men, women and children alike - the contributions both search for 'common ground' between opposing positions in our struggles around abortion, and seek to bring balance to these contentious debates. The book will be valuable to anyone interested in law and society, gender and religious studies and philosophy and theory of law.



Robin West is Frederick Haas Professor of Law and Philosophy at the Georgetown University Law Center and Faculty Director of the Georgetown Center for Law and Humanities, where she has taught since 1986. She previously taught at the University of Maryland School of Law from 1986-1991 and the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law from 1982-1985, and served as Visiting Professor at Stanford Law School and Chicago Law School. She has written extensively on gender issues and feminist legal theory, constitutional law and theory, jurisprudence, legal philosophy, and law and humanities. Justin Murray is an appellate attorney at the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia. After receiving his J.D. degree from the Georgetown University Law Center, where he served as president of the pro-life student group Progressive Alliance for Life, he worked as a law clerk on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and the U.S. District Court of Maryland. He has written articles on the constitutional status of the right to abortion, the intersection of legal ethics and racial justice, and criminal procedure. Meredith Esser is a litigation associate at Arnold & Porter LLP. She received her J.D. degree from the Georgetown University Law Center, where she served as president of Law Students for Reproductive Justice and represented indigent clients in the District of Columbia as part of the Law Students in Court Legal Clinic. Upon graduation, she clerked on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit and the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.


’Introduced by Robin West’s brilliant articulation of the limits of a rights-based strategy for assuring reproductive justice for women, this powerful collection of essays by women with differing views on the pro-choice/pro-life spectrum will deepen the national dialogue on how to actually bring about full sexual and economic equality for women while reducing unwanted pregnancy and abortion. Taken together, these essays model a path out of the superficiality of the culture war on this subject and towards a new, engaged political culture of care, respect, and compromise that will improve the lives of women and deepen the moral thoughtfulness of our entire society.’ Peter Gabel, Editor-at-Large of Tikkun magazine, co-founder of the Critical Legal Studies Movement, and author of Another Way of Seeing: Essays on Transforming Law, Politics, and Culture