Imagine that you’re sixteen years old and still in school.
Now imagine that you have just discovered that you’re pregnant.
From the 1870s until well into the twentieth century, buying birth control was illegal in the United States. And until the early 1970s, abortion was illegal in most states as well.
Desperate women sought illegal abortions from anyone who offered them or dangerously tried to end their pregnancies themselves. Tens of thousands of women were injured or maimed, and thousands died.
Women’s rights advocates, doctors, lawyers, and ordinary people fought religious and cultural traditions and often put their own reputations and freedom on the line to change the laws.
Ultimately, the decision came down to the nine men on the United States Supreme Court. On January 22, 1973, the court’s ruling in the case Roe v. Wade made abortion legal in every state.
Jane Against the World takes readers on an emotional and riveting journey through the intense fight for reproductive rights and one of the most controversial and divisive rulings in U.S. history—one that continues to reverberate today.
This eye-opening book is the perfect tool to facilitate difficult discussions and awareness of a topic that is rarely touched on in school but affects each and every young person.
This journalistic look at the history of abortion and the landmark case of Roe v. Wade is a necessary book.
“In comprehensive detail, Blumenthal (Bonnie and Clyde) traces the complicated battle for reproductive rights in the U.S. from the late 1830s to today’s continued challenges. The centerpiece of the book is a scene-by-scene exposition of both hearings by the Supreme Court of the landmark Roe v. Wade case, in which Blumenthal sensitively illuminates the Supreme Court Justices’ struggles with the moral, medical, and legal aspects of abortion. The author also brings to life key figures in many arenas, including women faced with unwanted pregnancies who agreed (sometimes anonymously) to enter the legal fray, as well as doctors, clergy, and lawyers who actively helped or hindered either side. Closing chapters, entitled “Pushback: 1992–2000” and “Restrictions 2000-2016,” and the epilogue note the many ways in which reproductive rights continue to be vigorously contested. Written in clear, accessible language, as lively as it is thorough, the book presents the issue as far more nuanced and complex than the often sharply divided “pro-choice” and “pro-life” stances it is often boiled down to. Extensive back matter includes a glossary, timeline, wide-ranging bibliography, and notes. Ages 12–up. ” —Publishers Weekly
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