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 Featured Title
Without Apology
Writings on Abortion in Canada
Shannon Stettner  

$29.95 Paperback
Release Date: 7/31/2016
ISBN: 9781771991599    

368 Pages

Distributed for Athabasca University Press


About the Book

Until the late 1960s, the authorities on abortion were for the most part men--politicians, clergy, lawyers, physicians, all of whom had an interest in regulating women’s bodies. Even today, when we hear women speak publicly about abortion, the voices are usually those of the leaders of women’s and abortion rights organizations, women who hold political office, and, on occasion, female physicians. We also hear quite frequently from spokeswomen for anti-abortion groups. Rarely, however, do we hear the voices of ordinary women--women whose lives have been in some way touched by abortion. Their thoughts typically owe more to human circumstance than to ideology, and without them, we run the risk of thinking and talking about the issue of abortion only in the abstract.

Without Apology seeks to address this issue by gathering the voices of activists, feminists, and scholars as well as abortion providers and clinic support staff alongside the stories of women whose experience with abortion is more personal. With the particular aim of moving beyond the polarizing rhetoric that has characterized the issue of abortion and reproductive justice for so long, Without Apology is an engrossing and arresting account that will promote both reflection and discussion.

About the Author(s)

Shannon Stettner teaches in the Department of Women's Studies at the University of Waterloo. She is the co-founder of the Reproductive Activism and Abortion Research Network.

Contributors: Aalya Ahmad, Tracey L. Anderson, Jane Cawthorne, Peggy Cooke, Shannon Dea, Carolyn Egan, Linda Gardner, Laura Gillespie, Sterling Haynes, E.K. Hornbeck, Clarissa Hurley, "Dr. James", H. Bindy K. Kang, Kristen, Natalie Lochwin, Mackenzie, Colleen MacQuarrie, Ruth Miller, Judith Mintz, Erin Mullan, Jen Rinaldi, Sadie Roberts, Martha Solomon, Shannon Stettner, Karen Stote, Nick Van der Graaf, Bernadette Wagner, Laura Wershler, Shannon West, Ellen Wiebe, and Jess Woolford.

Table of Contents


Without Apology: An Introduction
Shannon Stettner
A Brief History of Abortion in Canada
Shannon Stettner

Part I Speaking from Experience

An Abortion Palimpsest: Writing the Hidden Stories of Our Bodies
Judith Mintz
Clarissa Hurley
But I Kept All These Things, and Pondered Them in My Heart
Jess Woolford
Keep It Small
E.K. Hornbeck
A Bad Law and a Bold Woman
Bernadette Wagner
A Lonely Ride

Part II Abortion Rights Activism

Reproductive Freedom: The Ontario Coalition for Abortion Clinics and the Campaign to Overturn the Federal Abortion Law
Carolyn Egan and Linda Gardner
Handmaids on the Hill: Defending Our Rights One Womb at a Time
Aalya Ahmad and the Radical Handmaids
Breaking the Silence Through Portrait and Story
Martha Solomon
“We Can Get There Faster If We All Move Together”: The Birth and Evolution of a Reproductive Justice Activist
Colleen MacQuarrie
Waves of Change in Prince Edward Island: Opening the Dialogue on Abortion Access
Sadie Roberts

Part III Challenging Opposing Positions

Blinded by the Right: My Past as an Anti-abortion Activist
Natalie Lochwin
One Life Change Leads to Another: My Evolving View of Abortion
Tracey L. Anderson
Pro-Choice for God’s Sake
Shannon West
Pro-choice with No “Buts”: Three Commentaries
Laura Wershler
Enriching the Reproductive Justice Lexicon: A Case for the Label Pro-abortion
Laura Gillespie
Same as It Ever Was: Anti-Choice Extremism and the “Third Way”
Jane Cawthorne
Women over Ideology
Nick Van der Graaf

Part IV Practitioners and Clinic Support

Dissolving Fear, Fostering Trust: Lessons from Life in Abortion Care
Peggy Cooke
“Do you think I will go to hell for this?”
Ruth Miller
Countering Shame with Compassion: The Role of the Abortion Counsellor
Erin Mullan
Women Judging Women: Whose Reasons Are “Good Enough”? Whose Choice Is OK?
Ellen Wiebe
Therapeutic Abortion: A Nonnegotiable Women’s Right
Sterling Haynes
On Becoming an Abortion Provider: An Interview
Shannon Stettner and “Dr. James”

Part V Sites of Struggle

The Myth of Reproductive Choice: A Call for Radical Change
Karen Stote
Sex-Selective Abortion and the Politics of Race in Multicultural Canada
H. Bindy K. Kang
The Public Pregnancy: How the Fetal Debut and the Public Health Paradigm Affect Pregnancy Practice
Jen Rinaldi
A Harm-Reduction Approach to Abortion
Shannon Dea

The Unfinished Revolution
Shannon Stettner

List of Contributors


Sample Chapter

A sample chapter of this title is not available at this time. For further information, please email

Related Topics

Women's Studies

Other Ways To Order

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