No Higher Court: Contemporary Feminism and the Right to Abortion

By Germain Kopaczynski | Go to book overview

CHAPTER THREE
CAROL GILLIGAN, 1936-

The Psychology of Abortion

The conflict precipitated by the pregnancy catches up issues that are critical to psychological development. These issues pertain to the worth of the self in relation to others, the claiming of the power to choose, and the acceptance of responsibility for choice. By provoking a confrontation with choice, the abortion crisis can become a "very auspicious time. You can use the pregnancy as sort of a learning, a teeing-off point, which makes it useful in a way." The same sense of a possibility for growth in this crisis is expressed by other women, who arrive through this encounter with choice at a new understanding of relationships and speak of their sense of "a new beginning," a chance "to take control of my life."1


Abortion in a Different Voice

In 1971 Mary Daly was invited to speak at Harvard as part of the continuing lecture series of the Harvard Divinity School. At the end of her talk she urged her followers to walk out of the Harvard Memorial

____________________
1
Carol Gilligan, In a Different Voice: Psychological Theory and Women's Development ( Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1982), pp. 94-95. For the thirty-second printing, Gilligan has added a "Letter to Readers, 1993," but the text remains the same. In a Different Voice is the best-selling book in the history of Harvard University Press.

-101-

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No Higher Court: Contemporary Feminism and the Right to Abortion
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Acknowledgements xiii
  • Preface xvii
  • Introduction - "A Fight Against the Work of God" 1
  • Chapter One - Simone De Beauvoir, 1908-1986 19
  • Chapter Two - Mary Daly, 1928- 61
  • Chapter Three - Carol Gilligan, 1936- 101
  • Chapter Four - Beverly Wildung Harrison, 1932- 137
  • Chapter Five - Pro-Choice Feminism 181
  • Chapter Six - Pro-Life Feminism 203
  • Bibliography 227
  • Index 239
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