Hand of God: A Journey from Death to Life by The Abortion Doctor Who Changed His Mind [NOOK Book]


As the former director of the world's largest abortion clinic and the nation's most prominent abortionist, Dr. Bernard Nathanson presided over 61,000 abortions.

As co-founder of the National Abortion Rights Action League he helped make abortion legal.

Then, in a conversion that made headlines and ...
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Hand of God: A Journey from Death to Life by The Abortion Doctor Who Changed His Mind

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As the former director of the world's largest abortion clinic and the nation's most prominent abortionist, Dr. Bernard Nathanson presided over 61,000 abortions.

As co-founder of the National Abortion Rights Action League he helped make abortion legal.

Then, in a conversion that made headlines and astonished both sides of the abortion debate, he renounced his profession to become a pro-life advocate.

But Dr. Nathanson's journey was not over. In this deeply personal memoir, he reveals what led a lifelong atheist and abortion crusader first to the pro-life cause, and finally to Christianity.

The Hand of God is more than one of the most dramatic autobiographies of our time. It is also a definitive explanation of the pro-life positions not only on abortion, but on related issues such as fetal tissue research and doctor-assisted suicide. "I know the abortion issue as perhaps no one else does," writes Nathanson. Even those as committed to legal abortion as he once was will find his arguments challenging and his story unforgettable. Now in paperback, this book features and introduction by Reverend C.J. McCloskey, III.

A prominent name in America's 30-year cultural war over abortion, Dr. Nathanson was co-founder of the National Abortion Rights Action League and director of the first and largest abortion clinic in the U.S. Part autobiography, part spiritual memoir, part scientific and philosophical treatise, this work offers startling new insights into abortion, human embryo research, and "physician-assisted suicide."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
During a period of roughly 20 years, Nathanson performed over 75,000 abortions. Since 1975, however, he has been among the leaders of the pro-life movement in the United States. Here, in a book that is part spiritual autobiography, part political campaign and part history of abortion, Nathanson explores the factors that led him into and eventually out of the abortion business. Nathanson recounts the moral hollowness and a paternalistic treatment of women and their bodies during his early years in medicine that allowed him to abort even his own child in a cold and antiseptic matter. However, the advent of ultrasound, and its images of the fetus as a developing life, along with a progressive conversion to Roman Catholicism, convinced Nathanson of the immorality of abortion and led him into a new phase of his life as a doctor. As revealing as this story is Nathanson's condescending tone and sententious sentences (e.g., "I will spare you the ineluctable Tolstoian observation, but I implore you to consider the psychological abyss that yawned beneath me") elicit very little sympathy either for Nathanson's plight or for the pro-life position. (May)
Ray Olson
Nathanson cofounded the pro-choice organization NARAL in 1969 and during 197172 made New York's Center for Reproductive and Sexual Health the best U.S. abortion clinic--accomplishments at the forefront of the push to make abortion commonplace. Before then, he had had a frustrating life distinguished by a love-hate relationship of epic proportions with his father. The senior Nathanson was a cold husband, a cruelly domineering parent, and a Jew who denigrated Judaism yet raised his son in it; but he was a conscientious physician faithful to the Hippocratic oath with its hard line against abortion. His son followed his example in most things, only rebelling by discarding religion and championing abortion. During the 1970s, Nathanson changed, becoming an important voice against abortion and assisted suicide and fetal tissue experimentation, too. At the end of his memoir cum apologia, he imparts that he hopes to be received into the Roman Catholic Church. Thanks to a wide-ranging vocabulary and a flare for cadenced prose, he makes most of his testimony lively and enthralling reading.
Kirkus Reviews
Autobiography combines with a battery of argument and data in this passionate account of the author's transition from pioneer of abortion rights to champion of the pro-life cause.

Ob/gyn Nathanson (New York Medical College; Aborting America, 1979) was co-founder in 1969 of the National Association for Repeal of Abortion Laws (now known as the National Abortion Rights Action League) and the director of the first and largest abortion clinic in the US. He describes how he grew up in a "hate-filled household" in which his brilliant but autocratic father taught him to despise his mother and ridiculed the family's Jewish observances. Nathanson senior thwarted his son's desire to fight in WW II and in 1945 arranged his transition from Cornell to McGill Medical School, where our author was deeply impressed by Karl Stern. During his residency at New York's famous Woman's Hospital, Nathanson was horrified at the consequences of botched illegal abortions, and his efforts to change the laws took off in 1967. He describes the decriminalization campaign and how in 1971 he became director of the Women's Services Clinic, where over 120 abortions were being performed daily. Nathanson's doubts began when Ultrasound revealed the intimate life and development of the fetus for the first time. In 1985 he helped make the controversial film The Silent Scream, which shows a fetus being sucked out and dismembered during an actual abortion. He argues that, whether or not it feels pain or is deemed viable, the fetus is a distinct and developing human life. Nathanson excoriates violence against abortion clinics but warns that current legislation is cutting off legitimate dissent. He is clearly not at peace with his past, and he states that he is presently seeking admission to the Catholic Church.

This concrete and powerful contribution will be required reading for all involved in the abortion debate.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781621571674
  • Publisher: Regnery Publishing, Inc., An Eagle Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 2/25/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Pages: 206
  • Sales rank: 510,592
  • File size: 406 KB

Meet the Author

Dr. Bernard Nathanson was co-founder in 1969 of the National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws (NARAL, later renamed the National Abortion Rights Action League), and former director of New York City's Center for Reproductive and Sexual Health, then the largest abortion clinic in the world. In the late 1970's he turned against abortion to become a prominent pro-life advocate, authoring Aborting America and producing the seminal pro-life video, "The silent Scream." After a long battle with caner, Dr. Nathanson passed away at his home in NYC at age 84.
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2012

    Highly Recommend

    Dr. Nathanson speaks articulately about his path that led to his choice to head NARAL and one of the clinics that performed the highest number of abortions on the east coast. He has a severe change of heart after viewing a sonogram. He exposes the abortion industry without making excuses for his own actions. His prose is eloquent yet cutting.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 12, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

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