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Beginning with the introduction of abortion law in the nineteenth century, this reader includes important documents from nearly two hundred years of debate over abortion. These legal briefs, oral arguments, court opinions, newspaper reports, opinion pieces, and contemporary essays are introduced with headnotes that place them in historical context. Chapters cover the birth control movement, changes in abortion law in the 1960s, Roe v. Wade, the Hyde Amendment and the Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act, state and federal regulation of abortion practices, and the freedom of speech cases surrounding anti-abortion clinic protests. The first section of each chapter sets the stage and explains the choice of documents. This rich, balanced collection is an indispensable reference tool for the study of one of the most passionate debates in American history. It brings together the writings of doctors, lawyers, scientists, philosophers, elected officials, judges, and scholars as few other legal readers do, and it is essential reading for those engaged in the ongoing debate about abortion law in the United States.