Karen Weingarten

  • Karen Weingarten profile photo
  • Abortion in the American Imagination Before Life and Choice, 1180-1940
Associate Chair
Associate Professor  
Klapper Hall, Room 602  

Research Interests

Karen Weingarten’s first book Abortion in the American Imagination: Before Life and Choice, 1880-1940 (Rutgers UP, 2014) presents a genealogy of the liberal rhetoric that currently subtends both the “pro-life” and “pro-choice” discourses of abortion today. You can read an interview with Professor Weingarten about her book on the history blog Process here. Her next research project takes a genealogical perspective on the intersections between feminist theory, women’s reproductive lives, and disability studies.

Other Research and Teaching Interests: American literature from 1850-1950, feminist theory, women’s and gender studies, reproductive justice, and disability studies.


English 244: Theory
English 316: Interdisciplinary Studies: Medicine and Literature
English 727: “What’s American about American Literature”
English 729: Modern Memoir: Tales of “Real Life” in the Twenty-First Century U.S.
English 736: Reading at the Intersections of Feminist Theory and Disability Studies
English 701: Graduate Methodologies

Selected Publications
Books and Edited Collections

Special Issue of Women’s Studies Quarterly, “Inheritance.” Co-edited with Maria Bellamy. Spring/ Summer 2020.

Special Issue of South Atlantic Quarterly, “Disorienting Disability.” Co-edited with Michele Friedner. July 2019.

The Broadview Guide to Writing: A Handbook for Students. Co-edited with Corey Frost, et. al. Broadview Press, May 2017

Abortion in the American Imagination: Before Life and Choice, 1880- 1940. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press, July 2014.

Selected Articles and Essays

“Disability and Debility in Edith Wharton’s Novels.” College Literature 47.3 (Summer 2020).

“Cutting us to the Bone.” (Op-ed.) Queens Daily Eagle. May 2020. https://queenseagle.com/all/karen-weingarten-queens-college-cuny-cutting-to-the-bone

“The Vaccine at the End of this Pandemic.” Nursing Clio. April 2020. https://nursingclio.org/2020/04/21/the-vaccine-at-the-end-of-this-pandemic/

“Philosophy’s Futures: The Reproductive Body’s Turn.” Hypatia vol. 34 no. 1. (January 2019).

“It’s All Biopolitics: A Feminist Response to the Critique of Prenatal Testing.” The Politics of Reproduction: Adoption, Abortion, and Surrogacy in the Age of Neoliberalism. Eds. Modhumita Roy and Mary Thompson. Ohio University Press, October 2019.

“What to Expect When You’re Expecting in the Nineteenth-Century U.S.” Nursing Clio. October 2019. https://nursingclio.org/2019/10/17/what-to-expect-when-youre-expecting-in-the-nineteenth-century-u-s/

“Over-the-Counter Anxiety: Selling the Home Pregnancy Test.” Nursing Clio. August 2019. https://nursingclio.org/2019/08/14/over-the-counter-anxiety-selling-the-home-pregnancy-test/

“The Eugenicists on Abortion.” Nursing Clio. July 2019. https://nursingclio.org/2019/07/02/the-eugenicists-on-abortion/

“Sex/Gender.” Co-authored with Lilla Toke. In Literature: An Introduction to Theory and Analysis. Eds. Mads Rosendahl Thomsen. New York: Bloomsbury. March 2017.

“Disability as Diversity: A New Biopolitics.” Co-authored with Michele Friedner. Somatosphere: Science, Medicine, and Anthropology. May 2016. http://somatosphere.net/2016/05/disability-as-diversity-a-new-biopolitics.html

“Shame Before the Law: Affects of Abortion Regulation.” In American Shame. Ed. Myra Mendible. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, April 2016.

“Testing Eugenics.” Avidly in the Los Angeles Review of Books. March 2016. http://avidly.lareviewofbooks.org/2016/03/10/testing-eugenics/

“Bad Girls and Biopolitics: Popular Fiction, Population Control, and Abortion Politics.” Journal of Literature and Medicine 29.1 (Spring 2011).