An urgent investigation into the experience of seeking an abortion after the fall of Roe v. Wade, and the life-threatening consequences of being denied reproductive freedom.

Product Code: 9385
ISBN: 9780385550086
Format: Hardback
Publisher: Doubleday
Pages: 368
Published Date: 05/21/2024
Availability:In stock
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Price: $29.00

On June 24, 2022, Roe v. Wade was overturned, and the impact was immediate: by 2024, abortion was virtually unavailable or significantly restricted in 21 states. In Undue Burden, reporter Shefali Luthra traces the unforgettable stories of patients faced with one of the most personal decisions of their lives.

Outside of Houston, there’s a 16-year-old girl who becomes pregnant well before she intends to. A 21-year-old mother barely making ends meet has to travel hundreds of miles in secret for medical treatment in another state. A 42-year-old woman with a life-threatening condition wants nothing more than to safely carry her pregnancy to term, but her home state’s abortion ban fails to provide her with the options she needs to make an informed decision. And a 19-year-old trans man struggles to access care in Florida as abortion bans radiate across the American South. Before Dobbs, it was a common misconception that abortion restrictions affected only people in certain states but left one’s own life untouched. Since the fall of Roe, a domino effect has cascaded across the entire country. As the landscape of abortion rights continues to shift, the experiences of these patients—who crossed state lines to seek life-saving care, who risked everything in pursuit of their own bodily autonomy, and who were unable to plan their reproductive future in the way they deserved—illustrate how fragile the system is, and how devastating the consequences can be.

A revelatory portrait of inequality in America, Undue Burden examines abortion not as a footnote or a political pawn, but as a basic human right, something worthy of our collective attention and with immense power to transform our lives, families, and futures.


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“This is a very important book and should be required reading for everyone interested in civil rights and gender equality in the health sector and beyond.” —New York Journal of Books

“An eye-opening and chilling look at the strain the U.S. reproductive healthcare system is undergoing in a post-Roe world… The story of Angela, a 21-year-old San Antonio mother who can’t afford another child and makes an expensive trip to New Mexico for a dose of the abortifacient mifepristone, is juxtaposed with the plight of Jasper, a trans man who struggles to access abortion care because his local clinic in Orlando, Fla., has been overwhelmed by out-of-state patients. The healthcare providers themselves paint a dire portrait of a system in crisis (“It’s an unfolding national disaster,” says one)…Luthra’s vivid and compassionate storytelling unveils an interconnected web of desperate individuals and heroic helpers who are only just barely within reach. It’s an urgent wake-up call.” —Publishers Weekly (starred)

“Vivid portrayals of lives disrupted and freedom denied.” —Kirkus Reviews

“Luthra’s well-researched, compelling book will appeal to anyone who is interested in the human cost of reproductive rights in America.” —Booklist

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