restricted access “We Are Forced to Declare War”: Linkages between the 1970 Abortion Caravan and Women’s Anti-Vietnam War Activism

To date, studies of the Abortion Caravan have addressed it primarily within the context of the growth of women’s liberation. At the same time, while the contribution of women to the anti-Vietnam War effort in Canada has been gaining increased scholarly attention, no works have yet explored the links between women’s abortion rights activism and their anti-Vietnam activities. This article explores these linkages through the 1970 Abortion Caravan, using oral history interviews, movement and mainstream media coverage, and the archival files of the Vancouver Women’s Caucus. Connections can be found in the women’s adoption of a language of war, in tactics and strategies used by each movement’s activists, and in the conflict between their competing political interests. This broader contextualization helps to illuminate some of the complexities of women’s abortion rights activism.