Languages Effect on Abortion: Analytical Essay

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I started this paper with how language affects how people feel towards abortion then I read an article on the histories of abortion and how that affects what is being done now. Then I went on to another article that did an experiment to see if politics was apart of how people feel for abortion.

Languages Effect on Abortion

A study conducted in Poland had some interesting findings about pro-life and pro-choice languages. This study was conducted for the purpose of establishing how language affects peoples opinions of the public about abortion. When a woman is pregnant and she is pro-life she tends to use terms about the baby’s post-birth; such as, infant or baby, making it more personal and connected with her. When a woman is pro-choice, she tends to use underdeveloped terms such as fetus and embryo because it dehumanises the infant, making her less emotionally attached should she chose to abort. The authors of this article pointed out that when royalty was expecting, it was the “Royal Baby,” even pre-birth. Why would the media establish that their child was a baby even before birth, but argue that other women’s children are just fetuses, and not babies?

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A separate study was conducted by survey on how people look on abortion. They used the terms fetus for one study group (Group one) and child for the other study group (Group two). First they tested the two separate group’s knowledge about development or a fetus or baby. Then the next section was how willing those people would be to support abortion if it was for medical reasons. When the abortion was medical for reasons, Group One and Group Two voted very close to the same, for admissibility for the abortion. The next portion of the study was on elective abortion. It showed that Group 1 using the word Fetus, was more willing to support elective abortion. Group Two using the word “baby,” was one-third percent less likely to vote for abortion than Group One, showing that the wording chosen does influence what choice would make in that situation.

Abortion Culture War in the United States.

Throughout the history of abortion, studies show that the republican party has affected

the legality of abortions. Maier says that an overwhelming majority of forty-six states have laws restricting abortion. The laws are waiting periods, reduction of legal time frames, prohibition of abortion-inducing medications, abortion prohibitions for private insurances, and Targeted Regulations of Abortion Providers, further known as TRAP. For example, North Dakota in 2016 has a law passed that has a six weeks limit on legal abortion, when a fetal heartbeat can be detected, but before most women know that they are pregnant. Thirty-four states have curbed private insurance policies for abortion, making it even harder for women to receive an abortion (Maier, 2017).

“The Hyde Amendment has prohibited public funding for abortion since 1976, so Planned Parenthood and other private health care clinics are often the only reproductive health care clinics available to these low-income women. Cutting economic lifelines to these clinics guarantees reduced access to legal abortion” (Guttmacher Institute, 2016). Over the past few years, a strategy of isolating the abortion provider is not only including TRAP laws but also pushes to fully defund Planned Parenthood on state and federal levels. It didn’t seem likely that Planned Parenthood would be defunded in the short term, until the Electoral College victory of President Donald Trump, along with the Republican majority in both houses of Congress, but after the fact they would end up needing to use most of their funding defensively.

Surgical abortion is slowly being depleted because of the laws that are being imposed, and most abortions are now being induced with medications, reducing most complications. In the state of Texas because of all the restrictions, these clinics are going out of business, in 2011 there were only eleven clinics in the state of Texas still in operations. In 2014 the number was threatened to be reduced to only six in the state. Throughout the country these clinics are being closed due to trials that are being held, and lost. Their case is generally deeming that not funding their services to pregnant women is unconstitutional, until the death of a judge by the name of Justice Antonin Scalia. She died in February 2016. Which refocused abortion legislation for years to come. This article research method was putting together legal documents to base her facts on.

The public’s general knowledge on the abortion topic.

Danielle Bessett, along with her fellow researchers, wrote an article studying to see if the politics of the state had an effect on the people’s knowledge on abortion and if they support it.

Their method for gaining there information was by a survey that they sent out to the reproductive age of America that they established was in between the ages of eighteen and forty-four, restircted in this way to find out what they reproductive population knew about abortion. They included men in this because men are often involved in the abortion descisions of their partner.

They used directed acyclic graph theory to identify potential contends of the survey to find the relationship between the exposure of state-level conservatism and the outcome of abortion health knowledge and abortion legality knowledge, and they also used this method of finding their contenders to assess the sufficiency of control for confounding in their statistical models. The following variables were determined to confound the exposure-outcome relationships: gender, age, race, education, political beliefs, religion, religiosity, personal history of abortion, knowing someone who has had an abortion and abortion beliefs. All models were therefore adjusted for these covariates. The researchers found a theory that stated, State-level political context influences the individuals’ cultural values. This theory is known as, The Red State vs. The Blue State hypothesis. In order for the researchers to test the hypothesis they made an online survey that 586 people could take. They found that politics didn’t affect the outcome and that the hypothesis needed to broaden its range because the political view was too short of a horizon to look upon for the state diversity (Bessett, 2015).


Abortion has been an issue on one side of the scale and the restriction of it has been the issue on the other. I started out with how language affects a person’s thoughts on the subject and learned that the medical term has less of a connection then the more humanized term. The next article that i read was more of the history of abortion i went into more of an article that was more historical and how it affects pressent day abortion. Then the last article showed how they disproved that politics have anything serious to do with a person’s choice to abort or not.


  1. Bessett, D., Gerdts, C., Littman, L. L., Kavanaugh, M. L., & Norris, A. (2015). Does state-level context matter for individuals’ knowledge about abortion, legality and health? Challenging the ‘red states v. blue states’ hypothesis. Culture, Health & Sexuality, 17(6), 733–746. doi: 10.1080/13691058.2014.994230
  2. Maier, E. (2017, June 4). Hidden Meanings of the Culture War over Abortion in the United States.
  3. Bilewicz, M. (2015, September). Foetus or child? Abortion discourse and attributions of humanness.


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