Campus News

Russell Library program to examine Roe v. Wade decision on anniversary

Forty years after the landmark Roe v. Wade decision by the U.S. Supreme Court, the ongoing debate surrounding it will be the subject of a discussion hosted by the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies Oct. 30 from 6-8 p.m. in Room 285 of the Richard B. Russell Building Special Collections Libraries.

On Jan. 22, 1973, a 7-2 majority of the U.S. Supreme Court decided the case of Roe v. Wade, and struck down a Texas law criminalizing abortion. The majority opinion asserted that the Texas law violated a woman’s right to privacy under the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, and the claim sparked debates on religion and morality and divided the country into pro-life and pro-choice factions.

In collaboration with two professors at the UGA School of Law, Randy Beck and Lori A. Ringhand, the Russell Library staff has created a program that will provide both short presentations on the topic at hand as well as time for attendees to talk through the issues. Trained moderators from the Russell Forum for Civic Life in Georgia, an outreach initiative dedicated to strengthening civic engagement and public discourse in Georgia, will be on hand to help facilitate these conversations alongside Beck and Ringhand.

The program is one in a series of three to be hosted by the Russell Library in October in conjunction with exhibition Now and Then: 1973, on display until Dec. 15 in the Russell Library Gallery. The series, titled “It Was a Big Year,” asks attendees to consider how a few key events in a single year changed the culture and course of a nation for years to come.