Show simple item record

dc.contributor.advisorChairperson, Graduate Committee: Mary Murphyen
dc.contributor.authorBaehr, Ninia Leilanien
dc.description.abstractStatement of Problem: Autonomy is a key and evolving concept in American identity. As the bioethical concept of patient autonomy develops and the elderly population in the U.S. grows, end-of-life decisions including self-directed dying are increasingly a matter of public debate. This study explores how veterans of the reproductive freedom movement view, and might be inclined to shape, the right-to-die movement. Methods: Similarities between the abortion movement in the 1960s and early 1970s and the right-to-die movement today were very briefly described to ten women who then participated in oral history interviews. Interviewees were 1) of childbearing age before Roe v. Wade, and 2) supportive of women's access to abortion. Women were asked open-ended questions about their own life experiences and their thoughts about self-directed dying. Results: Interviewees described their experiences with the deaths of loved ones, their personal and professional interactions with the health care system, and their opinions about self-directed dying. Conclusions: Women's personal and cultural backgrounds influenced their understanding of autonomy and the role it can, or should, play in individuals' lives. Commitment to women's self-determination was a shared core value for reproductive freedom veterans that informed their thinking about self-directed dying, but they expressed more concerns about the limitations and potential dangers of personal autonomy in relation to decisions about assisted dying than in relation to decisions about abortion. If engaged more fully, such women might emerge as a force not only to support but also to shape the right-to-die movement. Women who consider assisted dying to be a priority issue may be likely to support somewhat expanding the conditions under which individuals can receive aid in dying. Whether or not they regard assisted dying as important or even desirable, however, women interviewed regard related end-of-life issues, such as advance directives and support for care givers, as important concerns. Taken together, interviewees' input suggests that an inclusive right-to-die movement might place the specific issue of assisted dying in the context of a wider end-of-life movement addressing medical and social justice concerns that could increase the ability of all to live and die as they see fit.en
dc.publisherMontana State University - Bozeman, College of Letters & Scienceen
dc.subject.lcshAutonomy (Psychology)en
dc.subject.lcshRight to dieen
dc.titleOur bodies, our lives, our right to decide? : reproductive freedom, self-directed dying, and women's autonomyen
dc.rights.holderCopyright 2017 by Ninia Leilani Baehren, Graduate Committee: Robert Rydell; Kristen Intemann; Walter Fleming; Elizabeth Rink.en Studies.en

Files in this item


This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show simple item record

MSU uses DSpace software, copyright © 2002-2017  Duraspace. For library collections that are not accessible, we are committed to providing reasonable accommodations and timely access to users with disabilities. For assistance, please submit an accessibility request for library material.