Graduation Year

2016

Degree

M.A.

Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)

Degree Granting Department

Geography

Major Professor

Martin Bosman, Ph.D.

Co-Major Professor

Pratyusha Basu, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Michelle Hughes Miller, Ph.D.

Keywords

Abortion, Biopower, Citizenship, Feminist Geography, Textual Analysis, Zones of Indistinction

Abstract

Feminist geographers argue that gendered bodies and power are deeply entwined (McDowell 1992; Rose 1993). However, few geographers have investigated how gender and power interact in relation to the politics of abortion access. This thesis seeks to fill this gap by conducting a feminist content analysis of six newspapers from Florida’s three largest metropolitan areas to determine how articles featuring abortion are framed. Analysis of the dataset concludes that the politicization of the abortion debate results in the erasure of women from the conversation, the identification of a pregnant women trope which homogenizes all women into one category, and Planned Parenthood’s classification as a health care provider being ignored subsumed under a recognition of its role in providing abortion services. Overall this study argues that patriarchal institutions regulate women into compulsory motherhood, thereby constraining their agency and ability to fully participate in society participate in political democracy.

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