Rapoport Center Reproductive Justice Colloquium

A colloquium speaker series event on reproductive justice.

Upcoming Events

October 9, 2023 Monday

TNH 2.111 (Sheffield-Massey Room)
4:00pm - 5:45pm

Aziza Ahmed: Rapoport Center Reproductive Justice Colloquium Series

Join us for our 3rd event in the Rapoport Center Reproductive Justice Colloquium Series presented by Professor of Law and N. Neal Pike Scholar at the Boston University School of Law Aziza Ahmed.

Abstract: Professor Aziza Ahmed’s talk interrogates the relationship between scientific expertise, evidence, and lawmaking. Largely through the example of the highly controversial forensic method known as the “floating lungs” test in the context of self-induced abortion and stillbirths, Ahmed argues that contestation around medical and epidemiological evidence shapes the regulation and criminalization of pregnancy-related outcomes. The stakes are high. Although in Dobbs, the Supreme Court ignored the role of experts and claimed to throw the question of who should decide when and how a person has an abortion to the people, tensions over science and medicine preceded the case and will continue. Abortion rights advocates, in part by attending to ways that science has been (mis)used in the criminalization of pregnant persons in the past need to examine purportedly neutral scientific and expert-based justifications in the legal regulation of the practice of medicine and medication more closely. Doing so will create new and necessary avenues for legal advocacy, including challenging when and where legal institutions legitimate misinformation about abortion or limit access to abortion based on science and evidence.

October 23, 2023 Monday

TNH 2.111 (Sheffield-Massey Room)
4:00pm - 5:45pm

Ji Seon Sung: Rapoport Center Reproductive Justice Colloquium Series

Join us for the 4th event in our Rapoport Center Reproductive Justice Colloquium Series presented by Assistant Professor of Law at the University of California, Irvine School of Law Ji Seon Sung.

Abstract: At a time when policing and medicine are colliding in the post-Dobbs landscape, the extent of hospital’s participation in policing and punishment merits attention. This talk argues that hospitals in the “free world” have become part of the carceral infrastructure. They perform functions essential to the operations of mass incarceration by identifying criminals, helping build criminal cases, preparing people for incarceration, and treating and returning people to imprisonment. Carceral authorities alter the complex, structured, and regulated hospital workplace by their immense formal and informal powers. This talk identifies this deference to and incorporation of carceral rules and practices as an expansion of the modalities of policing and custodial practices, pointing in part to the ways that hospitals perpetuate problems of mass incarceration, such as racial subordination and loyalty to carceral logics of “public safety.”

November 6, 2023 Monday

TNH 2.111 (Sheffield-Massey Room)
4:00pm - 5:45pm

Priscilla Ocen: Rapoport Center Reproductive Justice Colloquium Series

Join us for the final event in our Rapoport Center Reproductive Justice Colloquium Series, presented by Professor of Law at Loyola Law School Priscilla Ocen. Assistant Professor of African and African Diaspora Studies Nessette Falu will respond.

This event is co-sponsored by the Texas Law Pipeline Beyond Program.

Abstract: Since the Supreme Court issued its decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, at least 24 states across the country have enacted draconian restrictions on abortion. While the form of these restrictions may vary, many have one thing in common: they are facilitated by the vast network of surveillance and punishment constructed as part of the “war on crime” that produced the largest prison population in the world. At every stage, law enforcement plays a critical role in restricting reproductive autonomy of people capable of pregnancy. Despite that policing is a critical component of anti-abortion restrictions, few pro-choice advocates have embraced critiques of policing or the broad use of law enforcement to address systemic social problems. This is a mistake. In this talk, I argue that to secure the right to reproductive autonomy, advocates and scholars must challenge the role of policing in care settings and question the fundamental role of imprisonment and punishment in our society through an abolitionist lens.

Sponsored by:

Bernard & Audre Rapoport Center for Human Rights & Justice

Texas Law Pipeline Beyond Program