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Mary Ziegler

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Year of Publication: 2020

Ziegler, Mary, Abortion and the Law in America: Roe v. Wade to the Present, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2020, pp. 326

Since the Supreme Court seems likely to reverse Roe v. Wade, the landmark abortion decision, American debate appears fixated on clashing rights. This work draws attention to an entirely different and unexpected shift in the terms of debate: instead of simply championing their own rights, those on opposing sides debated about the policy costs and benefits of abortion vs. the laws restricting it. This mostly unrecognized development deepened polarization. Whilst maintaining their constitutional demands, pro-choice and pro-life advocates increasingly disagreed about the basic facts. Drawing on unexplored records and interviews with key participants, Ziegler challenges the view that the Supreme Court is primarily responsible for the escalation of the conflict and charts social-movements divides and crucial legal strategies.

Year of Publication: 2018

Ziegler, Mary, Beyond Abortion: Roe v. Wade and the Battle for Privacy, Cambridge, Massachusetts , Harvard University Press, 2018, pp. 400

Mary Ziegler examines how Roe influenced a wide range of issues, including sexual liberty and the right to refuse medical treatment. The author explores a much wider range of political protest than simply abortion, and describes how social movements debated the meaning of privacy and struggled to use this concept to pursue political ends.

Year of Publication: 2015

Ziegler, Mary, After Roe. The Long History Of The Abortion Debate, Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press, 2015, pp. 400

Charts the cultural and political responses to Roe vs. Wade, the 1973 landmark decision of the U.S. Supreme Court that the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution provides a fundamental "right to privacy" that protects a pregnant woman's liberty to choose whether or not to have an abortion. Drawing on archives and more than 100 interviews with key participants, Ziegler argues that abortion rights proponents were insensitive to larger questions of racial and class injustice. She also contests the idea that abortion opponents were inherently anti-feminist. She demonstrates that the grassroots activists who shaped the discussion after Roe were far more fluid and diverse than the partisans dominating the debate today.

For an overview on the status of abortion laws in the U.S.A. up to May 2019, see the following links: