Dr. Jeff Koloze is Campus College Chair for University College at the Columbus, Ohio Campus of the University of Phoenix. He received his Ph.D. from Kent State University. Dr. Koloze’s primary research interest is the presentation of the right-to-life issues of abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia in American fiction. Most of these papers have been published in conference proceedings and on the web. He has taught communications, English (undergraduate and graduate) and humanities courses at several colleges and universities in the Cleveland, Columbus, and Springfield, Ohio metropolitan areas.2005 0-7734-5964-2
Religiously-based ethical aspects of the abortion issue have not been addressed in literary criticism; thus, determining the ethical content of twentieth-century American fiction concerning abortion will assist students of literature and those interested in this controversial issue. Specifically, the author identifies six ethical aspects of the abortion issue discussed in Judaism, Catholicism, and Protestantism. The first ethical aspect concerns the lex talionis passage in Exodus. Second, the concepts of “health” and “life” are considered. The study then examines whether the unborn child can be viewed as an aggressor against his or her mother. Determining whether the unborn child possesses “potential” or “actual” life constitutes the fourth ethical aspect, followed by the closely related categories of “formed” and “unformed” fetuses. The last ethical aspect concerns ensoulment. The study conducts close readings of abortion passages in canonical works by Dreiser, Hemingway, Dos Passos, Faulkner, Brautigan, and Irving. Incorporating biographical criticism and other tools of literary research, the author concludes that canonical works do not address these ethical aspects. Finally, the study addresses the six ethical aspects in other twentieth-century non-canonical works.