Abortion and Life
Author: Jennifer Baumgardner
"In her role as author and activist, Jennifer Baumgardner has permanently changed the way people think about feminism . . . and will shape the next hundred years of politics and culture."-The Commonwealth Club of California, hailing Baumgardner as one of Six Visionaries for the Twenty-First Century
"If Jennifer Baumgardner ever needs another mom, I'll be the first in line to adopt her. She's smart, fearless, and a formidable force for change."-Barbara Ehrenreich, author of Nickel and Dimed
In Abortion & Life, author and activist Jennifer Baumgardner reveals how the most controversial and stigmatized Supreme Court decision of our time cuts across eras, classes, and race. Stunning portraits by photographer Tara Todras-Whitehill of folk singer Ani DiFranco, authors Barbara Ehrenreich and Gloria Steinem, and others accompany their elucidating accounts of their own abortion experiences.
In this bold new work, Baumgardner explores some of the thorniest issues around terminating a pregnancy, including the ones that the pro-choice establishment has been the least sensitive or effective in confronting.
Jennifer Baumgardner is the producer/creator of the award-winning film I Had an Abortion. She is the co-author (with Amy Richards) of Manifesta: Young Women, Feminism, and the Future and Grassroots: A Field Guide for Feminist Activism (both Farrar, Straus & Giroux). Her most recent book is Look Both Ways: Bisexual Politics (FSG, 2007). She writes regularly for women's magazines like Glamour, Elle, and Allure, as well as more political outlets such as TheNation, Harper's, and NPR's All Things Considered. She lives in New York City.
Activist, filmmaker (of I Had an Abortion) and co-author (Manifesta: Young Women, Feminism and the Future) Baumgardner dedicates her work to spreading awareness about abortion. Graced with black and white photo portraits by Tara Todras-Whitehill of women wearing Baumgardner's shirt, reading simply "I had an abortion," the emphasis is on the testimony of these patients, revealing not only how common the procedure is (one in three women, according to the Guttmacher Institute) but how diverse those women and their situations are. Baumgardner begins with a brief history of abortion legislation in America, from pre-Roe v. Wade restrictions to clinic workers and doctors protested, threatened and murdered (as in the case of Buffalo doctor Barnett Slepian). Still, as Baumgardner says, it's the record of "our lives that might provide the best road map to strengthening women's reproductive freedoms." Included is a comprehensive listing of abortion resources, and 10 percent of the book's profits go to the New York Abortion Access Fund.
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Table of Contents:
Ch. 1 A Brief History of Abortion 19
Ch. 2 The "I Had an Abortion" Project 41
Ch. 3 The Rise of Pro-Voice 49
Ch. 4 Can You Be a Feminist and Pro-Life? 63
Ch. 5 Portraits and Stories of Women Who've Had Abortions: Florence Rice, Gloria Steinem, Sally Aldrich, Barbara Ehrenreich, Marion Banzhaf, Loretta Ross, Jackie Wos, Gillian Aldrich, Amy Richards, George Monos and Denise Oswald, Ani DiFranco, Sebastiana Correa, A'yen Tran, Robin Ringleka, and Jenny Egan 73
Ch. 6 Let's Talk 131
Afterword: Truth to Power 141
Resource Guide 145
Interesting textbook: The Thyroid SourceBook or Taoist Meditation
Our Undemocratic Constitution: Where the Constitution Goes Wrong (and How We the People Can Correct It)
Author: Sanford Levinson
Levinson argues that too many of our Constitution's provisions promote either unjust or ineffective government. Under the existing blueprint, we can neither rid ourselves of incompetent presidents nor assure continuity of government following catastrophic attacks. Less important, perhaps, but certainly problematic, is the appointment of Supreme Court judges for life. Adding insult to injury, the United States Constitution is the most difficult to amend or update of any constitution currently existing in the world today. Democratic debate leaves few stones unturned, but we tend to take our basic constitutional structures for granted. Levinson boldly challenges the American people to undertake a long overdue public discussion on how they might best reform this most hallowed document and construct a constitution adequate to our democratic values.
"Admirably gutsy and unfashionable."
--Michael Kinsley, The New York Times
"Bold, bracingly unromantic, and filled with illuminating insights. He accomplishes an unlikely feat, which is to make a really serious argument for a new constitutional convention, one that is founded squarely on democratic ideals."
--Cass R. Sunstein, The New Republic
"Everyone who cares about how our government works should read this thoughtful book."