Refusing disembodiment: Abortion and the paradox of reproductive rights in contemporary Italy

Feminist Theory 10 (2):227-244 (2009)
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Abstract

Employing insights from Italian sexual difference theory on law and rights, this article examines how both the text of the Italian Abortion Law of 1978 and its operation reveal the contradictions within liberal rights discourse on reproductive freedom. The Act itself contains traces of both Roman Catholic and liberal pluralist worldviews and has, since its introduction, been the site of conflict over competing notions of citizenship and legal identity. This article explores the impact of the Act's paradoxical nature on its operation against the background of the complex debates within the different strands of feminist theory in Italy over the question of reproductive freedom.

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