The Limits of Bodily Integrity: Abortion, Adultery, and Rape Legislation in Comparative Perspective, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Limits of Bodily Integrity

Abortion, Adultery, and Rape Legislation in Comparative Perspective, 1st Edition

By Ruth A. Miller


200 pages

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This volume argues that legislation on abortion, adultery, and rape has been central to the formation of the modern citizen. The author draws on rights literature, bio-political scholarship, and a gender-studies perspective as a foundation for rethinking the sovereign relationship. In approaching the politicization of reproductive space from this direction, the study resituates the role of rights and rights-granting within the sovereign relationship. A second theme running throughout the book explores the international implications of these arguments and addresses the role of abortion, adultery and rape legislation in constructing 'civilizational' relationships. In focusing on the Ottoman Empire, Turkey, France and Italy as case studies, Miller presents a discussion of what 'Europe' is, and the role of sexuality and reproduction in defining it.


'In a tour de force, Miller studies the governance of reproduction in France, Italy, Turkey and the Ottoman Empire to reconfigure Foucault's and Agamben's theories of biopolitics, question liberal, radical and critical feminist analyses of gender and citizenship, and offer a new understanding of the significance of rape as a "crime against humanity" .' Karen Engle, University of Texas, USA '…Miller conducts an inventive comparative analysis of the reproductive and sexual policies of France, Italy, Turkey, and the Ottoman Empire…Recommended.' CHOICE

Table of Contents

Contents: Introduction; Reproduction and race suicide; Sexuality and citizenship formation; Defining Europe; Women and the political norm; Conclusion; Bibliography; Index.

About the Author

Ruth A. Miller is Assistant Professor of Middle Eastern History at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, USA.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW / General
LAW / International