The challenges and promises of a Self-Managed Abortion multiverse

Senior Common Room - Law Building
Tuesday 25 April 2023 (15:00-16:00)
Dr Lucia Berro Pizzarossa

The Institute for Global Innovation, BLS Gender and the Law research group, and BLS Global Legal Studies reading group are delighted to co-host Dr Lucia Berro Pizzarossa (Georgetown University) for a ‘work in progress’ session on Tuesday 25 April.

The session will take place the Senior Common Room, Birmingham law School at 3pm. It follows an earlier workshop on interdisciplinary research on reproduction, hosted by the IGI (details and registration here).

All are welcome. Advance registration is not required for the Work in Progress session.

Transgressing biomedical and legal boundaries: the “enticing and hazardous” challenges and promises of a Self-Managed Abortion multiverse

Speaker: Lucia Berro Pizzarossa, Georgetown University 

Chair: Dr Felix E Torres, Birmingham Law School 

Abstract: Globally, abortion has largely been understood, researched, and regulated within a medico-legal paradigm. However, self-managed abortion (SMA) questions the centrality of the law and bio-medical paradigms, as well as the presumed individuality of abortion decision-making that it is predicated on. SMA offers an “enticing and hazardous” (Donnan & Magowan, 2009, p. 9) challenge to traditional legal and biomedical understandings of and approaches to abortion, as well as to social, religious, (pro)creative conventions. 

This paper details how abortion remains exceptionalised, setting conditions for “permissible transgressions”. We explore how SMA fundamentally challenges and alters meanings of abortion care and abortion provision: from whose authority and knowledge is valued and centred, to the environments that abortion is possible in, to issuing a broader challenge around how abortion itself is understood and depicted, and how SMA, thus, represents a deliberate move towards new ways of making meaning and (re)imagining abortions.

Dr Lucia Berro Pizzarossa  is an Associate at the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law and has extensive experience in interdisciplinary research on abortion law and policy. She currently works between law, policy making and women’s health

This work in progress is co-developed with Dr. Rishita Nandagiri (King’s College London)

Culture and collections

Schools, institutes and departments

Services and facilities