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Thomson, the right to life, and partial birth abortion or two MULES for Sister Sarah
  1. P Alward
  1. Correspondence to:
 Dr P Alward, Department of Philosophy; University of Lethbridge, 4401 University Drive, Lethbridge, AB T1K 3M4, Canada;


In this paper, I argue that Thomson's famous attempt to reconcile the fetus's putative right to life with robust abortion rights is not tenable. Given her view, whether or not an abortion violates the fetus's right to life depends on the abortion procedure utilised. And I argue that Thomson's view implies that any late term abortion that involves feticide is impermissible. In particular, this would rule out the partial birth abortion technique which has been so controversial of late.

  • abortion
  • feticide
  • right to life
  • bodily rights

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