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Real Choices: Listening to Women; Looking for Alternatives to Abortion [Paperback]

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Item Number 103691  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   211
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 5.75" Height: 8.5"
Weight:   0.65 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Oct 1, 1997
Publisher   Conciliar Press
ISBN  1888212071  
EAN  9781888212075  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
Today, pro-life supporters across the country are realizing that it is time to move past the polarization of "women's rights" versus "unborn children's rights" to find practical solutions for both mother and baby. The book Real Choices gives an inside look at the reasons women make the tragic decision for abortion-as described by women who themselves chose abortion. The book goes on to explore how pro-life supporters can help both mother and child by ministering to women in their need with . . . Real choices.

Buy Real Choices: Listening to Women; Looking for Alternatives to Abortion by Frederica Mathewes-Green from our Christian Books store - isbn: 9781888212075 & 1888212071

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More About Frederica Mathewes-Green

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Frederica Mathewes-Green is one of today's most respected voices on Orthodoxy in America. She has been interviewed in the New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, Newsweek, and Time, among other publications, and is the author of eight books, including The Illumined Heart: Capture the Vibrant Faith of Early Christians, and The Open Door: Entering the Sanctuary of Icons and Prayers. Visit her at

Frederica Mathewes-Green currently resides in Baltimore, in the state of Maryland.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Hearing real women, offering real choices  May 24, 2006
The author shares the insights of focus groups all over the country, exploring the reasons they chose abortion and what circumstances could have helped them to have chosen otherwise. What they had to say was surprising: that it was not financial circumstances, or even logistics, that led them to the abortion clinic, but lack of support for the pregnancy among those closest to them. Real Choices challenges the assumption that women need abortions or even choose them for rational reasons; rather, it raises the question of whether they actually are pressured into abortion because of the laziness and disinterest of their loved ones. Real Choices is a disturbing yet heartening read.
Pro-Life and Pro-Choice advocates recommend this book  Feb 13, 2006
This fact alone should tell you something about this book. Very readable, which is another plus. The author attends group sessions and she provides a rare glimpse into the thoughts of those scarred by abortion. An issue so often framed by slogans, this is an attempt to humanize the issue (and the effort succeeds). Tries to get to the heart of a very complex matter. After reading this book, it is easy to see why screaming political slogans will never solve the problem. A courageous book. Highly recommended.
A fresh approach to a maddening problem  Dec 10, 2004
I wish that everybody, on both sides of the argument over abortion, would read this book. Frederica Mathewes-Green sees the problem clearly, and the approach she takes here offers real hope that transcends the political shouting matches we've had for the past 30+ years.

She captures the problem from the right - everyone agrees that it's a baby, that argument is pretty well settled - and yet women still seek and have abortions; why? Just to ask that question leads in some very constructive directions, and Ms. Mathewes-Green follows them through.

She is very perceptive from a larger social perspective - "Any society that pits mothers and children in a fight to the death is going insane."

Her gentle, irenic tone, and her compassion for women who "want an abortion the way an animal caught in a trap wants to gnaw off its own leg", are especially striking. We have come to expect, over the years, that opposing sides in this argument simply see each other as evil, but she refuses to do that, seeking instead to find common cause with her 'friends on the other side' - is there *anything* we can agree on?

Frederica Mathewes-Green cuts through the rhetorical fog and gets at the heart of the problem. If more people could adopt her approach, there might be hope for real progress on a maddening problem.
What sort of "choice" is abortion?  Jul 16, 2002
"No one wants an abortion as she wants an ice-cream cone or a Porsche. She wants an abortion as an animal, caught in a trap, wants to gnaw off its own leg."

With that line, Frederica Matthewes-Green has opened up a new line of dialogue about the tragedy which is abortion. Whether pro-choice or pro-life, everyone agrees that abortion should be rare. But the debate about abortion has rarely moved on to ask what we might all do to make abortion rare. Matthewes-Green has continued on in this direction by conducting an extensive research project inquiring into the circumstances which lead women to choose abortion. REAL CHOICES presents her findings, which should serve as a basis for dialogue about what we all can do change a world in which 1,500,000 women every year seek abortion in the United States alone.

She used a combination of surveys, and most poignantly, discussion groups to listen to women reflect on the life situations that forced them into abortion. The stories are heart-rending. Too often, women are forced into abortion by the fathers, by their parents, by their counselors, and by their friends. The procedure itself is violent, not just for the life which is destroyed, but for the woman who experiences it. Many women seek out abortion because they feel they have no other choice.

REAL CHOICES asks us to think harder about ways in which we could offer women more positive options. We are all complicit in the abortion tragedy - when we assume that problems can be disposed of (without asking what consequence this has for the woman and her child), when we allow fathers to shirk their responsibility to the mother and her child, when we allow parents to pressure their children to get rid of "embarrassments", when we look askance at the girl in the class who is actually pregnant, we collectively create a climate in which women have no real choice at all.

If we all agree that abortion should be rare, then we should all be passionately interested in understanding the situations that force women to abort. The irony of the pro-choice movement is that it has created a climate in which many women feel they have no choice at all. The tragedy of the pro-life movement is that by pitting the life of the unborn against the needs of the mother, it has forced troubled women to refuse to acknowledge the reality of what they are doing. Matthewes-Green suggests that more compassion on both sides would go a long way towards healing our nation of its greatest wound. REAL CHOICES is essential reading.

Real women speak: "Abortion is capitulation, not liberation"  Jan 4, 2001
It's rare to find a book like this one, commended by people as diverse as pro-choice strategist Naomi Wolf and pro-life activist Helen Alvare.... In a passage often quoted by pro-lifers and pro-choicers alike, Mathewes-Green once said: "No one wants an abortion as she wants an ice cream cone or a Porsche. She wants an abortion as an animal, caught in a trap, wants to gnaw off its own leg." Real Choices clearly illustrates, through survey research and "listening group" discussions, that women who have had abortions definitely believe abortion is a miserable "choice." Why do women have abortions? (Many pro-lifers and pro-choicers will be surprised by the answers.) Can we use women's actual responses to work to provide better alternatives from which to choose? (So women won't feel like "trapped animals" to begin with.) These are Mathewes-Green's crucial questions.I strongly recommend this book to anyone concerned about the health and wellbeing of women, all pro-choicers and all pro-lifers. I believe you'll find Real Choices pleasantly easy-to-read and fascinating as well as informative. Feminists in the classic tradition of Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Alice Paul have always opposed abortion because it perpetuates the marginalization, exploitation, and abuse of women. The experiences of many women who have had abortions, like those in Real Choices, clearly bear this out. For more reading on this topic, check out Prolife Feminism Yesterday and Today edited by Mary Krane Derr and Pro-Life Feminism: Different Voices edited by Gail Grenier Sweet.

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