When journalists, academics, and politicians describe the North American anti-abortion movement, they often describe a campaign that is male-dominated, aggressive, and even violent in its tactics, religious in motivation, anti-women in tone, and fetal-centric in arguments and rhetoric. Are they correct?
In The Changing Voice of the Anti-Abortion Movement, Paul Saurette and Kelly Gordon suggest that the reality is far more complicated, particularly in Canada. Today, anti-abortion activism increasingly presents itself as “pro-women”: using female spokespersons, adopting medical and scientific language to claim that abortion harms women, and employing a wide range of more subtle framing and narrative rhetorical tactics that use traditionally progressive themes to present the anti-abortion position as more feminist than pro-choice feminism.
Following a succinct but comprehensive overview of the two-hundred year history of North American debate and legislation on abortion, Saurette and Gordon present the results of their systematic, five-year quantitative and qualitative discourse analysis, supplemented by extensive first-person observations, and outline the implications that flow from these findings. Their discoveries are a challenge to our current assumptions about the abortion debate today, and their conclusions will be compelling for both scholars and activists alike.
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Paul Saurette is a professor in the School of Political Studies at the University of Ottawa.Review:
“Saurette and Gordon’s book is a major contribution to our understanding of abortion politics in Canada and a compelling example of how to analyse political strategy through discourse. It will be a ‘go-to’ text for gender and politics courses.”(Lois Harder, Department of Political Science, University of Alberta)
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Book Description University of Toronto Press, S, 2016. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P111442647612
Book Description Univ of Toronto Pr, 2016. Hardcover. Book Condition: Brand New. 1st edition. 456 pages. 9.00x6.25x1.25 inches. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # 1442647612