Abortion and the Law in America

Regular price $ 29.99

by Mary Zeigler

Cambridge University Press

12/15/2020, paperback

SKU: 9781108735599


The first comprehensive legal history of a vital period, Abortion in America illuminates an entirely different and unexpected shift in the terms of debate. Rather than simply championing rights, Mary Ziegler shows, those on opposing sides battled about the policy costs and benefits of abortion and laws restricting it. This mostly unknown turn deepened polarization in ways many have missed. Never abandoning 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 complicates the view that the Supreme Court is responsible for the escalation of the conflict. A gripping account of social-movement divides and crucial legal strategies, this book delivers a definitive recent history of an issue that transforms American law and politics to this day


"This is essential reading for anyone interested in abortion politics and law. We think abortion is a battle of principle, but as Ziegler shows again and again, both sides of the debate are also waging a war of facts and empirical evidence. This book will be eye-opening for everyone, even the most knowledgeable people in the field." -- David S. Cohen, author of Obstacle Course and Living in the Crosshairs

"Few scholars know the history and law of abortion as well as Mary Ziegler. In this compelling book, she demonstrates how much we miss by continuing to view abortion through the prism of that 'clash of absolutes' pitting the constitutional right to choose against the constitutional right to life. In fact, she demonstrates, almost since Roe v. Wade was handed down, foes and advocates have fought about the costs and benefits of abortion, as well as rights to it. Abortion and the Law in America is indispensable reading for anyone interested in the vanishing line between science and spin, social movements and their legal strategies, and the role of the Supreme Court in the past - and future - of one of our most intractable conflicts." -- Laura Kalman, Distinguished Professor of History, University of California, Santa Barbara

About the Author:

Mary Ziegler is Stearns Weaver Miller Professor at Florida State University College of Law and one of the leading authorities on the legal history of abortion in America. She is the author of Beyond Abortion and the award-winning After Roe. She often lends her expertise to mass media outlets across the world.