Emily Martin

Emily Martin might have found this article interesting, I hope you do.



In an effort to show the differences better marked and unmarked Martin explored the nature of the language used to describe health systems within them and the implications inherent in any negative or disruptively descriptive language.


“It’s indicative of the dangerous, anti-abortion extremist mindset: Reiterating the terms “fertilization” and “postfertilization” and “probable fertilization age” emphasize the fetus while further removing the woman from the law. Acknowledging gestational age, two weeks prior to fertilization, would mean acknowledging that there is someone else involved in an abortion—the woman, whose body has been existing, functioning and preparing for gestation even before the fetus was conceived.” (Lauren Barbato, Ms Magazine)


Are we talking about the fetus and the male creative act here in these laws while ignoring and subverting the woman’s role in this act.  Who do the writers of these laws expect to track the cycles of these baby making devises anyway?  I will use my little Amelia as an example.  It is no uncommon for a nursing mother to not have a cycle, for extended periods of time, often until the baby is weaned or at least eating the bulk of it nutrition from other sources.  Amelia as my longest term pregnancy was estimated at 38 weeks.  The estimation comes in as under these laws her fertilization  age would have to have been counted at 96 weeks.  Why instead of moving forward in science and social growth are the leaders of our society attempting to subvert half the population in a war of words and definitions.


Would this be the case if men could have abortions? I do not mean inflict an abortion on a woman’s body but legally severe their ties as a progenitor.


2 thoughts on “Emily Martin

  1. That article was funny. What was more funny was that, what was it? 20, states have already agreed in using that murky and sexist measurement of fertilization. I do see how they really try to just erase the woman out of the picture. Then they try to just invent new medical terms and make-believe periods out of nowhere to make the matter more believable, ridiculous!!! I think Martin would’ve tore that read a new one.

  2. kevinruiz89 says:

    I suppose you could look at it from the idea, stemming from Foucault, that knowledge is a form of power. By a medical professional, whether the information is correct or not, stating this information asserts that his level of knowledge is greater than the general public’s and thus it is what he says that is important. This argumentum ad verecundiam, or appeal to authority, is not uncommon in extremely heated issues of debate. The supporters of the scientifically questionable stance will often find, in this case, medical professionals, who may be wholly qualified but have their own personal bias in the issue and thus are misusing their station of authority. As such it makes it difficult to overcome such an argument because, although there are just as many with a bias to the other side, the people who have to vote on the topic may not have the knowledge to understand a conclude which side of the table is correct because they do not understand the scientific method, the evidence is lacking on both sides etc. and often may come down to either which side they heard first or which side correlates to their initial bias all of which stems from the non-expert public’s inherent lack of knowledge (which, as we all know, is an ever growing epidemic in an of itself).

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