Abortion and feminism

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Abortion and feminism is linked and has demonstrated inconsistent, changing and contradictory views by feminists over time.

Early feminists like Susan B. Anthony and Mary Wollstonecraft campaigned for the equality of women, and recognized that abortion was not just an operation, but also a moral evil, being an act of murder.[1] While this position was shared by many early feminists, it is only openly acknowledged by a minority of current-day feminists.[2] Decades after the death of the early feminists, their successors restructured feminist ideology and feminist politics, by altering its historical position to become a driving force behind the pro-abortion lobby for much of the 20th century.

In demonstration of this, a number of modern-day feminists have used linguistic red herrings to reframe the abortion debate around a woman's right to control her own body. Such red herrings include terms of "empowerment"[3] or "reproductive justice".[4] This technique obscures the fact that a fetus is a living, individual human being with its own rights and needs, not simply a growth or piece of property.


  1. Cosner, L. Abortion: an indispensable right or violence against women. Creation Ministries International. (2007) [1]
  2. Feminists for Life. Feminist History. (2011)
  3. Feminist Women's Health Center. Welcome to FMHC. (updated January 27, 2001) [2]
  4. Feminist Abortion Network. Feminst Abortion Network: Community Based. National Impact. Brochure (n.d.) [3]

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