Abortion: the hard arguments
Head to Head debate
Saturday 1 November, 12.15pm until 1.15pm, Lecture Theatre 1 Lunchtime Debates

Abortion was once a debate with two clear sides. The anti-abortion lobby condemned it as murder, while the pro-choice lobby argued that access to abortion was crucial to women’s equality. But in recent years, the abortion issue has been emptied out of both its political and moral content. Those opposed to abortion often refuse to condemn abortion outright, focusing instead on the problems of the number of abortions, late abortions, and disputed evidence about the negative impact of abortion on women’s physical and emotional health. The pro-choice lobby has also been criticised for ‘hiding behind the science’, focusing its energies on countering the anti-abortionists’ claims and evading the presentation of a positive case why women need access to abortion as early as possible and as late as necessary.

Science can and should inform the medical practice of abortion, but it can never tell us whether abortion is right in principle. It is time to put the politics and morality back into the abortion debate, through tackling the hard arguments. When does life begin? How far should we take ‘a woman’s right to choose’? What kind of legislation on abortion should we expect in a civilised society?

 

Watch the session video...

 Speakers
Ann Furedi
chief executive, British Pregnancy Advisory Service
John Wyatt
professor of ethics and perinatology and honorary consultant neonatologist, University College London
Chair:
Dr Maria Grasso
lecturer in politics and quantitative methods, Department of Politics, University of Sheffield; author: Generations, Political Participation and Social Change in Western Europe


 Produced by
Dr Maria Grasso lecturer in politics and quantitative methods, Department of Politics, University of Sheffield; author: Generations, Political Participation and Social Change in Western Europe

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