In this dissertation, I illustrate the interactive nature of strategic framing processes of the American pro-life and pro-choice movements and the process whereby movements borrow and co-opt language and imagery from opposing movements. Illustrated by two case studies of reactive and strategic counterframing in the pro-choice and pro-life movements, I show how such framing complicates the boundaries between these movements' ideologies. What was once demarcated as progressive becomes a champion of conservative causes and vice versa. I extend social movement theories of interactive framing processes and boundary demarcation by contributing an analysis of instances where activists blur ideological boundaries between movements and risk weakening the collective identification of movement adherents. I have identified two "cases"� that exemplify this interactive framing process and the subsequent blurring of ideological boundaries between the pro-life and pro-choice movements--1) pro-choice activists framing abortion as "good mothering" � and 2) pro-life activists framing abortion as "Black genocide". � I argue that as each movement responds to countermovement threats by borrowing and co-opting language and imagery from the opposing movement, the ideological boundaries between the pro-life and pro-choice movements are blurred. Blurred boundaries threaten the stability of each movement by weakening collective identity ties and risk marginalizing and alienating certain movement adherents.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. August 2015. Major: Sociology. Advisors: Lisa Park, Teresa Swartz. 1 computer file (PDF); I, 255 pages.
Interactive Framing Dynamics and Ideological Boundaries in the American Abortion Debate.
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