Few Supreme Court decisions have stirred up as much controversy, vitriolic debate, and even violence as the one delivered in Roe v. Wade in 1973. Four decades later, it remains a touchstone for the culture wars in the United States and a pivot upon which much of our politics turn.
Peter Charles Hoffer examines the lasting impact of this landmark decision in a discussion of his book (co-authored with N.E.H. Hull) Roe v. Wade: The Abortion Rights Controversy in American Historyon Thursday, September 19, 2013, at 6:30 p.m. at the Central Library, 14 W. 10th St.
Hoffer highlights the abortion issue's historical background, Roe v. Wade's core issues, essential personalities, and key precedents. He tracks the case's path through the courts, clarifies the jurisprudence behind the court's ruling, and gauges its impact on American society and subsequent challenges to it in Webster v. Reproductive Health Services (1989) and Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992).
Hoffer is Distinguished Research Professor of History at the University of Georgia. Among his books are The Salem Witchcraft Trials: A Legal History, The Supreme Court: An Essential History, The Treason Trials of Aaron Burr, and Law and People in Colonial America.
The Legal Landmarks series is co-presented by the Kansas City Public Library, the Truman Library Institute, and the Federal Court Historical Society. It is made possible by grants from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation Legacy Fund with additional support provided by Spencer Fane Britt & Browne LLP. The series is co-sponsored by the University Press of Kansas and the University of Kansas School of Law.
Admission is free. A 6 p.m. reception precedes the event. RSVP at kclibrary.org  or call 816.701.3407.