Pat Maginnis: 1960's activist who helped women get abortions in Mexico : Consider This from NPR Patricia Maginnis, who was 93 when she died on August 30, may have been the first person to publicly call for abortion to be completely decriminalized in America. Despite her insistence on direct action on abortion-rights at a time when many were uncomfortable even saying the word "abortion," Maginnis is not a bold letter name of the movement. That may be because she didn't seek the limelight and she cared more for action then self-presentation.

Guests include Lili Loofborow, who profiled Maginnis for Slate; Professor Leslie J. Regan, who wrote the book When Abortion Was a Crime; and the artist Andrea Bowers whose video piece, Letters to An Army of Three recreated the messages people would send Maginnis when they were desperate to access abortion services.

Special thanks to the Schlesinger Library, where the 1975 oral history of Pat Maginnis is housed.

In participating regions, you'll also hear a local news segment that will help you make sense of what's going on in your community.

Email us at considerthis@npr.org.

Remembering an Abortion Rights Activist Who Spurned the Spotlight

Remembering an Abortion Rights Activist Who Spurned the Spotlight

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Women rights activists hold up signs as they gather in Washington, DC. to protest the new abortion law in Texas. While she was instrumental to the early abortion-rights movement, many in the crown may not have known the name Pat Maginnis. Joshua Roberts/Getty Images hide caption

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Joshua Roberts/Getty Images

Women rights activists hold up signs as they gather in Washington, DC. to protest the new abortion law in Texas. While she was instrumental to the early abortion-rights movement, many in the crown may not have known the name Pat Maginnis.

Joshua Roberts/Getty Images

Patricia Maginnis, who was 93 when she died on August 30, may have been the first person to publicly call for abortion to be completely decriminalized in America. Despite her insistence on direct action on abortion-rights at a time when many were uncomfortable even saying the word "abortion," Maginnis is not a bold letter name of the movement. That may be because she didn't seek the limelight and she cared more for action then self-presentation.

Guests include Lili Loofborow, who profiled Maginnis for Slate; Professor Leslie J. Regan, who wrote the book When Abortion Was a Crime; and the artist Andrea Bowers whose video piece, Letters to An Army of Three recreated the messages people would send Maginnis when they were desperate to access abortion services.

Special thanks to the Schlesinger Library, where the 1975 oral history of Pat Maginnis is housed.

In participating regions, you'll also hear a local news segment that will help you make sense of what's going on in your community.

Email us at considerthis@npr.org.

This episode was produced by Matt Ozug and edited by Sarah Handel with help from Sarah McCammon, Ammad Omar, Lee Hale, and Brent Baughman. Ayda Pourasad researched this episode. Our executive producer is Cara Tallo.