State Feminism and Policy Debates on Abortion in Austria

Regina Köpl

in Abortion Politics, Women's Movements, and the Democratic State

Published in print November 2001 | ISBN: 9780199242665
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191600258 | DOI:

Series: Gender and Politics

 State Feminism and Policy Debates on Abortion in Austria

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The author describes three policy debates in Austria: initial legalization in the early 1970s, the defeat of an anti‐abortion referendum initiative in 1978, and the authorization of Mifegyne—the ‘abortion pill’—in the late 1990s. The women's movement has been very influential in all abortion debates through their activism in the left‐wing Austrian Social Democratic party and the long‐term commitment of that party to women's right to self‐determination. In all debates as well, the women's policy agencies acted for the movement inside the state policy‐making processes. Austrian abortion politics is an example of movement success in part through state feminism.

Keywords: abortion politics; Austria; Austrian Social Democratic party; Mifegyne; policy‐making; referendum; self determination; state feminism; women's movement; women's policy agencies

Chapter.  9163 words. 

Subjects: Comparative Politics

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