Graduation Year


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Azamat Junisbai

Reader 2

Piya Chatterjee

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@ 2018 Sabrina S Gunter


According to a 2017 study conducted by the Guttmacher Institute, roughly one in four women will have an abortion in their lifetime. Despite how incredibly common of an experience it is, one almost never hears abortion talked about on an individual basis. This study seeks to find out why people who’ve had abortions do or don’t talk about them, and why, as well as what, if anything, can and needs to be done to change the conversational landscape around abortion. I used qualitative methods to conduct seven participant-led interviews with different people who have had abortions. My findings show that people don’t talk about their abortions for a variety of reasons, including but not limited to: fear of stigma, feeling there’s no non-“awkward” way to bring it up in conversation, and simply not really thinking about it that often. My participants also described a variety of ideas for fighting this stigma, primarily through connecting with, talking with, listening to, and being a source of mutual support for other people who have also had abortions. Because I used a participatory-action model of methods, my participants and I worked to put some of their ideas into action after the conclusion of our interviews.

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Sociology Commons