Critical Analysis Of Abortion

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“Abortion -should it be a right of every woman in the present context- A critical analysis”
1. Introduction

I elected to present my dissertation on a topic based on ‘abortion’ since it is a hidden social menace in our society. It is like an iceberg. The tip represents the reported abortions, which everyone sees. However, there ismore and more of that iceberg hidden below the surface of the water.

In the Health Master Plan 2007-2016, Ministryof Healthcare & Nutrition of Sri Lanka has identified deaths due to haemorrhage and indirect causes following septic abortions as a significant challenge in the reduction of maternal mortality and morbidity ratio .

The Sri Lankan Law on abortion is based on the provisions in the Penal Code, which was
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2. What is abortion?

The definitions of abortion vary from one source to another. Nevertheless, it refers to the termination of a pregnancy. ‘Abortion’ is ending of the pregnancy by removing a fetus or embryo from the womb before it can survive on its own. This can occur either spontaneously or due to human intervention. When an abortion is caused purposely, then it is called an induced abortion. When it happens due to natural causes, it is a spontaneous abortion. Although the term ‘abortion’ implies a premature termination of pregnancy for any reason, the layman better understands the word ‘miscarriage’ for involuntary fetal loss.

(a) Dictionary meanings

The most renowned Oxford Dictionary defines abortion as the expulsion or removal from the womb of a developing embryo or fetus, in the period before it is capable of independent survival, occurring as a result either of natural causes or of a deliberate act . The World Encyclopedia defines abortion as the expulsion of a fetus from the womb before it is capable of independent survival . The interpretation to the word ‘abortion’ given in the ‘Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English’ is ‘a medical operation in which a baby’s development inside a woman is stopped so that it is not born alive’ . Another dictionary meaning for ‘abortion’ is ‘a situation where a fetus
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Social Aspects of Abortion
I. History of Abortion
Since ancient times, abortions had been performed using herbal abortifacients, by applying force on the abdomen or by other traditional methods such as strenuous labor or exercise, pouring hot water onto the abdomen, etc.There have been archaeological finds that have discovered the use of crude methods of surgical attempts to extract the fetus.
Aristotle (384-322 B.C.) believed that abortion can be practiced on it before the fetus develops sensation. He drew the line between lawful and unlawful depending on the sensation as the fact of being alive .The first recorded evidence of induced abortion is from the Egyptian Ebers Papyrus in 1550 B.C. . Ancient Chinese records report that abortion was used among the royal concubines (515–500 B.C.), with the use of mercury to abort a fetus. Greece has a history of abortion that which can be found in some of their early classical texts. Abortion procedures in Greece were assigned mostly to midwives, or those who well educated in abortion procedures. Plato, in his Theaetetus makes mention of

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