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This Is Now: Shefali Luthra

May 29 @ 10:00 pm - 11:00 pm

Healthcare reporter Shefali Luthra takes to the Kepler’s stage to discuss Undue Burden, an urgent investigation into post-Roe America.

Join reporter Shefali Luthra and Kepler’s journalist in residence Angie Coiro for a discussion about personal decisions made political in post-Roe America. Luthra’s new book Undue Burden follows the stories of patients impacted by abortion bans, and the domino effect that those bans have across the nation.

About Undue Burden

On June 24, 2022, Roe v. Wade was overturned, and the impact was immediate: by 2023, abortion was virtually unavailable or significantly restricted in 21 states. As other nations largely expand legal abortion access, the US has gone backwards; the bans being enforced in many states are some of the most severe in the entire world.

In Undue Burden, reporter Shefali Luthra traces the stories of patients faced with a private decision about the body made public by the body politic. Outside of Houston, there’s a 16-year-old girl who becomes pregnant well before she intends to. A 21-year-old mother barely making ends meet has to travel hundreds of miles in secret to access care in another state. A 42-year-old woman with a life-threatening condition wants nothing more than to safely carry her pregnancy to term, but her home state’s abortion bans fail to provide her with the options she needs to make an informed decision. And a 19-year-old trans man struggles to access care in Florida as abortion bans radiate across the American South.

As the landscape of abortion rights continues to shift, the experiences of these patients illustrates how fragile the system is, and how devastating the consequences can be. Through the perspectives of patients, providers, activists, and lawmakers, Undue Burden is a revelatory portrait of human rights, healthcare, and inequality in America.

About the Author

Shefali Luthra has covered national health policy for the past decade, most recently at The 19th. Her coverage of abortion rights has been cited in Congressional testimony and Supreme Court briefings and in 2023 received an Online Journalism Award. Luthra’s writing has appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, on NPR, and more. She lives in Washington, DC.


May 29
10:00 pm - 11:00 pm


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