How Representation In Media Shapes The Public Opinion On Abortion

By Nayla Khwaja
September 22, 2021

The mass media plays an integral part in providing context for public opinion. Newspapers, articles, magazines, cinema, television, etc. may offer a discursive space in which readers can converse with an ‘imagined community.’ At the same time, misrepresentations lead to confused narratives and distorted opinions that could further lead to discreditations.

As we know, the mainstream media reporting around abortion is often unhealthy and the media gatekeeping around the whole phenomena narrows it down to a noxious narrative for abortion seekers. This largely affects the opinion of the masses and put abortion seekers in negative light which furthers the possibilities of prejudice, otherisation or discrimination against them.

Continued: https://feminisminindia.com/2021/09/22/how-representation-in-media-shapes-the-public-opinion-on-abortion/


Set in Chad, Cannes film ‘Lingui’ explores abortion struggles

July 9, 2021
Reuters

CANNES, France, July 9 (Reuters) - The director behind "Lingui", a Cannes Film Festival entry about a teenager's battle in Chad to get an abortion, said on Friday he hoped the story would resonate well beyond the African country, including in places like the United States where there are vocal anti-abortion movements.

Mahamet-Saleh Haroun said he was inspired to explore the issue after reading stories about babies abandoned or killed by their young mothers in Chad, where abortion is only allowed in specific cases where a woman's life is in danger.

Continued: https://www.reuters.com/lifestyle/set-chad-cannes-film-lingui-explores-abortion-struggles-2021-07-09/


From “Plan B” to “Grandma,” 5 abortion road trip movies that reflect our frustrating reality

From buddy comedies to dramas, movies focused on abortion barriers tell a story that shouldn’t need to be told

By KYLIE CHEUNG
PUBLISHED JUNE 6, 2021

Last week, Hulu's "Plan B" became the latest movie to focus on the complex, stigmatizing and sexist barriers to reproductive care, which are especially difficult for young people. In Natalie Morales' directorial debut, two South Dakota high school students, Sunny (Kuhoo Verma) and Lupe (Victoria Morales) have 24 hours to find emergency contraception after Sunny's first sexual encounter. The problem is, the only pharmacist in their small hometown denies Sunny access to the pill citing the "conscience clause."

To be clear, emergency contraception is entirely different from abortion care, preventing rather than ending a pregnancy that's already underway. But other than that important distinction, "Plan B" continues a growing trend of movies in which seeking abortion or other reproductive care through tremendous cost, geographical and legislative barriers isn't just a subplot — it's the main storyline.

Continued: https://www.salon.com/2021/06/06/abortion-road-trip-movies-plan-b-unpregnant-grandma/


Are we making progress in depicting abortion on screen?

Analysis of the past 60 years of how abortion has been portrayed in film and TV reveals how many negative tropes still endure.

BY KATHARINE SWINDELLS
13 MAY 2021

Although you might not naturally see similarities between BAFTA TV nominees I May Destroy You, Bridgerton, and the latest documentary from filmmaker Deeyah Khan, they all share a common thread in their depiction and discussion of abortion.

A study of the past 60 years of film and television shows how far we have come in stories that portray abortion, but also highlights the endurance of negative tropes that perpetuate misrepresentation and stigma.

Continued: https://www.newstatesman.com/culture/tv-radio/2021/05/are-we-making-progress-depicting-abortion-screen


How The “Abortion Road Trip” Movie Became An Instant Classic

KAYLA KUMARI UPADHYAYA
OCTOBER 20, 2020

Conversations about abortion have been playing out on the big screen since decades before Roe V. Wade legalized them in the United States in 1973. One of the first known movies that deals with the topic is a 1916 film called Where Are My Children? Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the early year, it was a negative portrayal of abortion.

In recent years, however, depictions of abortion in movies have become more common and somewhat more realistic. In 2020 alone, there have been nine films that depict a character obtaining an abortion, double the number of 2019, according to Advancing New Standards in Reproductive Health (ANSIRH)’s Abortion Onscreen Database. Only two of these movies showed an adverse physical outcome as a result of an abortion, and none portray an adverse psychological outcome. Two are comedies.

Continued: https://www.refinery29.com/en-us/2020/10/10015436/abortion-road-trip-movie-trend


From Unpregnant to Obvious Child, ‘Abortion Comedies’ Are Here to Stay

And we need them more than ever.

By Jenny Singer
September 10, 2020

There’s a moment in Unpregnant, a buddy comedy movie about abortion now streaming on HBO Max, that is so magical, so dead on in its rendering of the fearful joy of being alive that it will stay with you far longer than any headline spelling the doom of legal abortion.

Two teenage girls—played by Barbie Ferreira and Haley Lu Richardson—are hundreds of miles from home, literally upside down on a whirling fairground ride on a spring night in Texas, shouting truths to each other.

Continued: https://www.glamour.com/story/unpregnant-obvious-child-abortion-comedies


USA – Hooray! An Abortion Buddy Comedy

By Sangeeta Singh-Kurtz
Aug 12, 2020

In an interminably looooong list of bummer abortion movies — with some great exceptions like Obvious Child, Saint Frances, and Grandma — it’s still not all that often that a terminated pregnancy is anything other than the dark center of an upsetting story line. So, when a movie that depicts abortion as not only essential but ordinary — perhaps even comedic — I breathe a sigh of relief.

Needless to say I am thrilled about HBO Max’s Unpregnant, which is one part road-movie, one-part buddy comedy, where the protagonist needs to terminate her pregnancy (but that fact is a part of the broader story arc of her character and not just her One Thing.)

Continued: https://www.thecut.com/2020/08/unpregnant-is-an-abortion-buddy-comedy.html


Films such as Saint Frances and Obvious Child are showing that the subject need not be depicted with guilt and shame

Steve Rose
Mon 6 Jul 2020

There is nothing funny about the pro-choice v anti-abortion culture war that has been intensifying over the past few years, but comedy is proving to be a powerful weapon in it. To the extent that the phrase “abortion comedy” is no longer an oxymoron. You could well apply it to Alex Thompson’s new indie film Saint Frances, whose subject is a 34-year-old underachiever (Kelly O’Sullivan, who also wrote the movie) who hasn’t got her life together.

Becoming a nanny is a step forward; getting pregnant with a man she barely knows is a step back. She has no trouble getting a termination, but the film deals honestly with the aftermath, both physical (never has a film been less ashamed about menstruation) and emotional (even if her boyfriend has more issues about it than she does, which he writes down in his “feelings journal”). It does not treat the matter lightly, nor does it present a termination as something shocking or shaming or freighted with guilt.

Continued: https://www.theguardian.com/film/2020/jul/06/saint-frances-how-a-new-wave-of-taboo-busting-comedies-are-tackling-abortion


Midwife Means “With Woman”: ‘Call the Midwife’ and the History of Abortion in England

Midwife Means "With Woman": 'Call the Midwife' and the History of Abortion in England

4/4/2019
in History, by Janet Mullany

It’s 1964 and things are changing in Poplar on Call the Midwife.

A dad actually asks to be at the, ah, interesting end of his child’s birth and is firmly put in his place, and more women want to give birth in hospitals. Hemlines are rising as Britain becomes a fashion powerhouse. Yet some things just don’t change. As now, an obsession with royal births rules (and if you really want to know, apparently bets are now at 1:2 that Meghan and Harry’s baby will be a girl, with the top name predicted to be Diana. Yes, British bookies do big business during royal pregnancies). And sadly, not every birth is joyfully anticipated, and many women, particularly poor women in an area like Poplar, have few options for help.

Continued: https://blogs.weta.org/tellyvisions/2019/04/04/midwife-means-woman-call-midwife-and-history-abortion-england


US: A Century of Abortion Onscreen, 1916-2016

Dec 20, 2016, Rewire
by Gretchen Sisson

The end of 2016 marks the close of a century since the first silent film in the United States addressed abortion. In these past 100 years, film, television, and our popular culture have addressed abortion in evolving ways: from the pre-code films of the 1920s, to the exploitation films of the 1940s, to television plotlines in support of legal abortion in the 1960s, to the alternately stigmatizing and stigma-busting portrayals of the 1990s and early 21st century. The incorporation of abortion into onscreen storylines has been done for shock value, for sex educational purposes, for humor, for drama, and for horror. This presentation is not an exhaustive list of abortion stories in U.S. film and television (there are over 200 of them!), but it is meant to illustrate some of the notable examples, groundbreaking firsts, and trends that have emerged over time.

[continued at link]
Source: Rewire