Political Demography: The Banning of Abortion in Ceausecu's Romania

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Political Demography: The Banning of Abortion in Ceausecu's Romania by Mind Map: Political Demography: The Banning of Abortion in Ceausecu's Romania

1. Pronatalist Policies

1.1. instituted in 1966

1.2. birthrate had fallen to 14.3 per 1,000 from 1960 rate of 19.1 per 1,000

1.3. decline was attributed to the legalization of abortion

1.4. to counteract the decline, Law 770/1966 was introduced

1.5. Law 770/1996 prohibited abortions except if it endangered the woman and no other means could be taken to save it, a disease was involved, the pregnancy was the result of rape, or the woman was over 45 and had already reared four children

1.6. birthrate skyrocketed

1.7. antiabortion law accompanied by measures to encourage women to bear children

1.8. women honored as heroes of socialist labor

2. Article 13

2.1. women who delivered and reared ten or more children were awarded the title of "Heroine Mother"

2.2. women who delivered and reared nine children received the first-class "Order of Maternal Glory"; those with eight, the second class "Order of Maternal Glory" and so on.

2.3. women who had delivered and reared six children were awarded the firs- class "Medal of Maternity"; those with five the second class "Medal of Maternity"

2.4. stipulations must be read carefully

2.5. children acquired through second marriages or adoption did not qualify women for medals or abortions

3. The Handmaid's Tale

3.1. inspired by Orwellian reproductive politics and written by Margaret Atwood

3.2. unveiled on International Woman's Day

3.3. Ceausecu responds by again saluting women's importance as child-bearers and urges women to fulfill the national goal of increasing the population

4. Implications for Reproductive Policy

4.1. the effects of banning abortion transcend political or religious interests

4.2. when abortion is criminalized, women resort to illegal abortions

4.3. prohibiting abortion forces abortion underground and makes it the privilege of the wealthy

4.4. for poor women, illegal abortions are typically done by unqualified practitioners--the woman herself, backroom abortionists--and result in increased maternal deaths as well as maternal and fetal physical deformities

5. Post-Ceausecu Abortion

5.1. "revolution" of December 1989 liberated women's bodies from the grip of the centralized state

5.2. the day after Ceausecu's execution, abortion became fully legal in Romania

5.3. abortion was assumed to be an essential ingredient of democratic practice

5.4. abortions skyrocketed

5.5. government began to address the need for sex education and family planning