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From Rights to Justice: Women of Color Changing the Face of US Reproductive Rights Organizing

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The history of government racism is part of the explanation of the limited contemporary use of human rights in the US. This history poses a challenge to mainstream organizations' ability to organize using human rights, yet some contemporary organizations embrace these concepts that are in full use within international settings. This article focuses on the emergent reproductive justice movement, a women of color-based social movement which complicates the narrow focus on protection of legislation such as Roe v. Wade by integrating human rights analysis of domestic social problems. In doing so, this paper expands understanding of uses of human rights in the US and illustrates how race and gender identities contribute to social movement organizing around reproduction.

Affiliations: 1: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor


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