Cathy Shine Lecture 2019.

The “Other” Problem in the Quest for Pregnant Women’s Personhood

Tuesday, March 5, 2019

1—2:30 p.m. (doors open at 12:30 p.m.)
Hiebert Lounge
72 East Concord Street

In writing about Catherine Shine’s case [Shine v. Vega, 709 N.E.2d 58 (1999)], George Annas explained that the “only justification for the use of restraints in an emergency is to prevent patients from physically harming themselves or others.” The claim that a woman is pregnant with an “other,” however, has provided the justification for state action depriving pregnant women of virtually every right we associate with constitutional personhood. This talk will address the question of whether pregnant women constitute a special class of persons and if “reproductive rights” provides an effective framework for ensuring that all patients, including pregnant women, are recognized as full civil and human rights bearing persons.

Boston University School of Public Health’s Center for Health Law, Ethics & Human Rights presents the annual Cathy Shine lecture. The lectureship honors the memory of Cathy Shine and her dedication to the rights of all those in need of care.

Cohosted with Boston University School of Law.


Lynn M. Paltrow, Founder and Executive Director, National Advocates for Pregnant Women


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