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Abortion: The Clash of Absolutes Paperback – September 17, 1992

3.6 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

In his study of the Supreme Court, God Save This Honorable Court ( LJ 2/1/86), Tribe provided new ways to think about the law. In this book, he does the same with the abortion issue. He argues that philosophical and legal analyses are the only means to reach an accommodation of two opposing views of pro-life and pro-choice. Tribe extensively examines political and social implications of major court and legislative decisions from Roe v. Wade to the present. He compares U.S. abortion policies with those of other nations, and he tries to answer some controversial questions on the rights of pregnant women and the fetus. Tribe sometimes gets too legalistic, but most readers will find his book understandable and thought-provoking. It should become a standard work on abortion issues. Highly recommended.
- Steven Puro, St. Louis Univ.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Review

Wise and powerful. . . . Intelligent people will not only learn something helpful from [this] book, they will also be able to read it. . . . The book is more than lucid: it is vibrant with ethical passion. (Nelson W. Aldrich, Jr. - New England Monthly)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; Upd Rev edition (September 17, 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393309568
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393309560
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.9 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,331,678 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
firmly in historical and legal contexts, making it possible view the question of conflicting rights from a fairly objective point. Whether one is pro- or anti-, this text offers information and supporting arguments for a variety of positions, and looks at the relative merits of each. Religious hysteria aside, if one is looking for a thoughtful text that permits one to form an opinion on the debate, one could do worse than to start with this book.
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Format: Paperback
Professor Tribe gives every argument a fair hearing. Every position is respected. I kept waiting for his bias to show, but it never did. Finally, an impartial and well reasoned book on abortion.
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Format: Paperback
Though Lawrence H. Tribe wrote Abortion: The Clash of Absolutes in 1990, almost fifteen years ago, though the exact same issues surrounding the abortion question are all relevant today. That's how much progress is made when two sides are tugging at one subject with the same fervor - it just doesn't move. Abortion is just as a hot topic today as it was in 1973 when Roe vs. Wade made it legal in the United States. It is the perfect issue for a culture war; it has everything - sex, feminism, death and religion. Tribe does justice to the abortion question. He rotates around his subject from all angles to get the best view possible. From the title alone and then supported by the first three paragraphs, it is evident that Tribe refuses to belittle either side but is determined to show how and why these absolutes clash. These absolutes, or course, are the right to life and the right to liberty, which when they meet at abortion, directly conflict.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was mislead a little by other reviews which suggested that this was a "balanced" and "unbiased" discussion of the abortion issue. This book is not quite that. The author is clearly pro-choice, and as result, his discussion favors pro-choice arguments. His claim of balance lies in his sympathetic mentioning of pro-life views, prior to using every effort to call them into question. He does not similarly call the pro-choice arguments into question, though they are as susceptible to his brand of slippery slope hypotheticals as the pro-life arguments he describes. I was expecting truly balanced treatment, but in many ways, the pro-life arguments were reduced to straw men. As a result, the book goes out of its way to try to gain sympathy and visibility for the women behind the pro-choice arguments--and it largely succeeds. But similar sympathy and visibility toward the unborn, though always mentioned, is also always abandoned as unworkable and incoherent. This seems to be the result of the author's selective critique, rather than any inherent qualitative difference between the two arguments. And that is unfortunate for the author is well-renown as a brilliant scholar, and is one who need not trade in straw men. I came to this book hoping for ideas of how to write in a way that genuinely treats both sides of a controversial debate with equal regard. While I appreciate all the history, the background, and have true admiration for the author, I left with a sense of how NOT to write such a book. : )
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Format: Paperback
Tribe's book, Abortion: The Clash of Absolutes is an excellent read for anyone who highly regards the constitutional and basic right to life. In his book,Tribe devotes equal time to shedding light on both to other cultures to see how they have dealt with this issue the Pro-life and Pro-Choice perspectives towards abortion.

Tribe investigates other cultures views and ways of handling abortion as well the evolution of abortion throughout American history.

I would strongly recommend this book to those who are interested in political science and the controversial issue of abortion. Whether you are Pro-Choice or Pro-Life, you will find this book highly enlightening and yourself forever changed.
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