Synopses & Reviews
Merle Hoffman's life story is riveting. A former classical pianist, a self-made millionaire, and a feminist who found her life's work providing abortions, she has been a fearless crusader for women's right to choose.
Over the years, Hoffman has used her entrepreneurial spirit to build one of the most comprehensive women's medical centers in the country. In 1971 (two years before the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court decision to legalize abortion nationally), Hoffman founded Choices, an abortion clinic in New York. As a medical provider, she pioneered "patient power," encouraging women to participate in their own health care decisions. And going against even her own expectations for her life after fifty, she adopted a child and writes about her experience as a mother.
Whether addressing the murder of abortion providers like Dr. George Tiller or challenging women to understand their own power over their bodies and the language used to wield such power, Merle Hoffman has been on the front lines of the feminist movement, a fierce warrior in the battle for choice.
Merle Hoffman is an award-winning journalist, activist, and women's health care pioneer. In 1971, she founded Choices, one of the first ambulatory abortion centers, which has become one of the nation's largest and most comprehensive women's medical facilities in the United States. She is also the publisher of On the Issues, an online feminist magazine.
"As director of one of the nation's first ambulatory abortion clinics, activist and journalist Hoffman implemented 'Patient Power' to ensure that the staff did not demean women seeking abortions. Characterizing abortion as 'often an act of love, and always an act of survival,' she eloquently chronicles more than three decades of struggles to keep abortion legal. Although replete with intimate details, such as her erotic teenage attachments to teachers, an affair with the married physician she persuaded to leave his wife for her, and her decision in her 60s to adopt a child, her memoir lacks introspection. Readers will wonder why she is so aggressive, competitive, and self-centered referring to 'my clinic,' 'my counselors,' 'my staff,' and describing how she 'imperiously' entered a formal dance with her married lover and 'answered for him' when he was asked about his wife's absence. Hoffman's arrogance contrasts sharply with her compassion for patients. Hoffman's lack of self-observation mars the book, but readers will learn much about her drive to recast 'reproductive freedom as a positive moral value.' 24 b&w photos." Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
A powerful account of the woman who made abortion her business.
About the Author
is an award-winning journalist, activist, and womenand#8217;s health care pioneer. In 1971, she founded CHOICES, one of the first ambulatory abortion centers, which has become one of the nationand#8217;s largest and most comprehensive womenand#8217;s medical facilities in the US. She is also the publisher of On the Issues, an online feminist magazine.