Choice of a Lifetime: Disability, Feminism, and Reproductive Rights

D.A. Caeton


The prevailing understanding is that feminism, both as activism and theory, harmoniously overlaps with disability studies. This article, however, seeks to more closely scrutinize the relationship between the two fields. Through an examination of reproductive rights — a particularly divisive issue — this article argues that technocultural arrangements of the body reveal a potential disjuncture between feminism and disability. The rhetoric surrounding reproductive rights frequently focuses on choice, health, and control. Such terms function according to different valences when thought through from the vantage of disability. Moreover, it becomes difficult to understand how a generalized form of abortion can allow for the specific protection of fetuses that exhibit forms of disability. While not fatalistic about the possibility of a reciprocal arrangement between disability and feminism, this article does caution that disability must be understood on its own terms before it can form beneficial relationships with other fields.


Reproductive Rights; Feminism; Abortion; Technology

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Copyright (c) 2011 D.A. Caeton

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