The powerful story of the women who founded and ran the Abortion Counseling Service, otherwise known as Jane, written by one of its members
Originally published in 1996, The Story of Jane is a fascinating, engrossing group memoir of the legendary Chicago reproductive rights organization the Abortion Counseling Service. Organized in 1969 and active until the opening of the first legal abortion clinics in 1973, Jane initially counseled women and referred them to underground abortionists, as other groups at the time had sprung up to do. But as Jane continued screening abortionists over the years, the group realized that as long as the women who turned to them were dependent on these practitioners, they would remain virtually helpless. The members of Jane determined to take matters into their own hands, and learned to perform the abortions themselves.
An extraordinary history written by a member who joined at the height of the organization in 1971, this is an urgent account of Jane’s evolution, the conflicts within the group, and the impact its work had both on the women it helped and the members themselves. This book stands as a compelling testament to a woman’s most essential freedom–control over her own body–and to the power of women helping women.