Abortion in Ireland: From Religious Marginalisation to State Recognition

  • Edwige Nault
Part of the New Directions in Irish and Irish American Literature book series (NDIIAL)


In 2010, the European Court of Human Rights’ decision prompted a new debate on the abortion issue in Ireland. After explaining how Catholic teaching has shaped Irishness and influenced the Irish Republic’s pro-life policy, this chapter focuses on the legislative changes the European Court decision brought about and exposes how these have dramatically loosened the Church–state relationship. Changes are also taking place at the sociocultural level and this chapter assesses the extent to which the Catholic ethos is losing its influence on Irish minds and behaviours, more specifically in terms of abortion. It concludes by showing that these mutations have been followed by a different perception of crisis pregnancies and abortion both in Irish society and at the state level.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Edwige Nault
    • 1
  1. 1.Charles de Gaulle University – Lille IIIVilleneuve-d’AscqFrance

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