The Case Against Abortion: An Interview with Dr. Francis Beckwith, author of Defending Life | Carl E. Olson | December 5, 2007
Dr. Francis Beckwith (personal website), Associate Professor of Philosophy at Baylor University, made news this past May when he publicly announced that he had returned to the Catholic Church after spending over thirty years in Evangelical Protestantism. But Dr. Beckwith has been receiving attention more recently for his latest book, Defending Life: A Moral and Legal Case Against Abortion Choice (Cambridge University Press, 2007), a thorough and impressive work that engages and responds to the many arguments—both popular and scholarly—given by abortion rights advocates.
Rev. Richard John Neuhaus of First Things stated of Defending Life: "By a masterful marshalling of the pertinent arguments and a civil engagement with the counter-arguments, Beckwith makes a convincing case for law and social policy based on reason and natural rights rather than the will to power." And in a November 26, 2007, column in America magazine, noted bioethicist Fr. John F. Kavanaugh, S.J., professor of philosophy at St. Louis University, wrote that Dr. Beckwith "charitably and thoroughly engages those who oppose him. Defending Life is a model of how a pro-life position is effectively mounted. One might hope that defenders of abortion would as thoughtfully engage his arguments. I at least hope that our own bishops will take up this work and, upon reading it, offer it to every parish library in the country. They might also request that lay leaders, especially physicians, lawyers, teachers and business persons, enlist such a book in their efforts not only to form their own consciences, but also to inform and elevate the somewhat cheapened and knee-jerk moral discourse over the issue of abortion."
Carl E. Olson, editor of Ignatius Insight, recently interviewed Dr. Beckwith and spoke with him about his book, the state of the pro-life movement, and how those who oppose abortion can better take a stand against the culture of death.
Read the entire interview...