By Dorothy McBride Stetson
Containing the result of a cross-national study venture on abortion politics in 11 democratic states (between the Sixties and 2000), this quantity marks significant development in abortion examine. It develops a entire study layout to ascertain even if women's coverage businesses (institutional teams meant to enhance the prestige of girls) have functioned as invaluable and potent allies of women's routine. It explores their efforts to realize entry to strength arenas and safe abortion legislation that coincide with feminist pursuits. certainly, those findings represent a rigorous program of comparative technique to evaluate reasons from social stream and democratic thought referring to adaptations in nation feminism and flow good fortune.
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Extra info for Abortion Politics, Women's Movements, and the Democratic State: A Comparative Study of State Feminism (Gender and Politics Series)
SELECTION OF DEBATES Because abortion law is part of the criminal code, the Parliament is the primary decision-making site for abortion policy. The Austrian Parliament consists of two chambers, which have different powers and different ways of selecting their members. The first chamber, the National Council (Nationalrat) is elected directly by the population under a proportional-representation electoral system. This chamber performs the main functions of legislation and political control. The second chamber, the Federal Council (Bundesrat), based on the number of seats each of the parties holds in the regional parliaments, has only a suspensive veto power and performs primarily a limiting and delaying role within the legislative process (Pelinka 1998).
Meanwhile, radical feminists set up alternative non-government institutions such as battered women's houses, rape crisis centres, and feminist health centres. When the abortion debate came on to the public agenda, the autonomous groups lacked leadership and took part in few actions on the issue. In contrast with the early 19705, abortion was not the main feminist issue preoccupying movement activists, but it still was a high priority to the consolidated women's movement. The counter-movement had lost some of its strength; the anti-abortionists of the 199 os were not the same as those of the 19705.
Focusing on women's rights of selfdetermination, the emerging feminist movement within the Social Democratic Party not only gendered the debate but also was able to change the dominant frame. Instead of emphasizing old class-struggle arguments, women's issues themselves were at the centre. Social Democratic Party officials themselves publicly recognized the dominant shift: the battle for abortion law reform more and more had become a battle for women's emancipation (Gofiler-Leirer and Edlingeri982).