For her project, 'Abortion and Religion: Listening to Women,' Peters sets out to interview over 100 people to understand how religious women in the United States think about their abortions.
Toddie Peters, professor of religious studies at Elon University, received $23,430 from The Center for Reproductive Health Research of the Southeast (RISE) at Emory University for her project, “Abortion and Religion: Listening to Women.”
For the project, Peters assembled a five-person research team representing scholars of religion from different religious traditions – Judaism, Islam, Catholicism, Black Protestant Christianity and White Protestant Christianity.
Phase I of the project begins with a pilot of 100 interviews in North Carolina to be completed by the end of 2021, resulting in publications and data from the pilot site. After refining the research methodology, data collection will continue in four other sites across the country that represent a range of U.S. perspectives. In addition to Peters, the research team includes Zahra Ayubi, Dartmouth College; Teresa Delgado, Iona College; Monique Moultrie, Georgia State University; and Michal Raucher, Rutgers University.
The purpose of the study is to understand how religious women in the United States think about their abortions. By interviewing women who identify as Christian, Jewish or Muslim from around the United States, this study will demonstrate how these religious women interpret their own pregnancy terminations within their religious identity and commitments and document what role religion played in their decision to terminate a pregnancy.
The research team is currently pursuing funding for Phase II, which is set to begin in 2022 and will extend the research to four additional sites across the country that represent a range of US perspectives.