Magazine article Herizons

[Beyond Pro-Life & Pro-Choice]

Magazine article Herizons

[Beyond Pro-Life & Pro-Choice]

Article excerpt

It is tempting to assume that the fight for reproductive rights is, if not dead, at least sleeping peacefully. After all, we are now well beyond the Supreme Court of Canada's 1988 Morgentaler decision and no subsequent government has been able to put abortion back into The Criminal Code.

For urban, middle class women in Canada, abortion is a relatively easy procedure to obtain. For very young women, women with limited economic resources, recent immigrants, and rural women, it can be more difficult to find, and pay for, timely service. Violence, and threats of violence shadow the lives of abortion providers. Is this much progress, paid for dearly by pro-choice women, doctors and clinic staff, enough? And how do we find our way beyond the current stalemate?

Kathy Rudy's book title appears to promise an answer to the latter question.

While specific chapters do shed light on some aspects of this issue, Rudy herself seems to be anguished by the subject of abortion. She discloses that she was adopted when her biological mother could not raise her, and she mourns the loss of community that made her own adoption feasible. Her evident sadness at the need for abortion leads to an authorial voice which seems to be trying to get around abortion, instead of beyond it.

The crux of the book is an attempt to reconcile modern Christian beliefs with contemporary women's expectations of freedom. The difficulties inherent in that challenge lead to a book which left me shaking my head at a book that does not live up to its billing. …

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