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January 14, 1974

Abortion, Society, and the Law

Author Affiliations

Harbor General Hospital Torrance, Calif

JAMA. 1974;227(2):208. doi:10.1001/jama.1974.03230150056035

The rapidity with which changes in legal, social, and medical attitudes toward abortion have occurred can only be described as incredible. Ten years ago therapeutic abortions in hospitals with private service were rare and on clinic services they were almost unknown. In contrast, during the first 18 months of New York's new abortion law (July 1,1970, to Dec 31, 1971), 278,122 legal abortions were performed in New York City alone. Responding to the need to gather and consolidate the increasing legal and medical information concerning abortion, the editors of Abortion, Society and the Law have collected exceptionally well-written, scholarly contributions from diverse sources including medicine, law, religion, and philosophy. Unfortunately, rapid accumulation of new medical information and legal interpretation makes it really impossible for a book to be strictly current in the field of abortion. The chapters of Abortion, Society and the Law that include legal views on the rights