The issue of abortion forces a confrontation with the effects of poverty and ecomic inequalities, local moral worlds, and the cultural and social perceptions of the female body, gender, and reproduction. Based on extensive original field research, this provocative collection presents case studies from Thailand, Cambodia, Burma, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Indonesia, and India. It includes powerful insight into the conditions and hard choices faced by women and the circumstances surrounding unplanned pregnancies. It explores the connections among poverty, violence, barriers to access, and the politics and strategies involved in abortion law reform. The contributors analyze these issues within the broader conflicts surrounding women's status, gender roles, religion, nationalism and modernity, as well as the global politics of reproductive health.
Andrea Whittaker is Associate Professor in the School of Population Health, University of Queensland, Australia. Her previous publications include Intimate Knowledge: Women and their health in North-east Thailand (2000), Women's Health in South-east Asia (edited, 2002) and Abortion, Sin, and the State in Thailand (2004). Her current research interests focus on infertility and reproductive tourism and medical travel in Thailand and the region.