- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
Is assisted reproduction a miracle for childless parents, or a morally distasteful industry that earns $3 billion a year for drug and medical device companies? It appears to be both in Washington Post Magazinefeature writer Mundy's account of the technological innovations that have allowed us to "cure" infertility. She interviews heartbroken would-be parents and those who worry about the social ramifications of generations of children who don't know who their biological parents are. Moreover, she explores the far-reaching effects of such medical technologies as fertility drugs, in vitro fertilization, sperm and egg donation, surrogacy, and genetic testing. More and more children have older parents; multiples (twins, triplets) are being born with greater frequency. What should be done with "excess" frozen human embryos? Should the industry of birth be better regulated, or is that allowing the government into the bedroom? Fans of Jodi Picoult's fictional account of the hazards of designer reproduction, My Sister's Keeper, may be interested in these real-life moral dilemmas. Recommended for public and academic libraries. [See Prepub Alert, LJ12/06.]
Posted May 30, 2007
Current developments in Artificial Reproduction Technology are making a fundamental change in the situation of humanity. It is no longer necessary for there to be sexual and ideally loving relations between 'man' and 'woman' to have children. This is is a revolutionary change in the human situation. What began as an effort to help infertile married couples have much desired offspring has become a three - billion dollar business in which there is very often disconnection between at least one of the genetic parents, and the child 'produced'. The new technology thus has in sociological terms one very questionable consequence. It has multiplied the numbers of what were once considered dysfunctional families, families without a father at home. There is increasing demand for the technology on the part of single women, and same- sex couples. The result is the proliferation of new kinds of families of a kind mankind has never known before. There are other problems created by the new technology. There has been produced a vast surplus estimated at close to five- hundred thousand frozen embryos. And the 'parents' have to decide whether to 'make use of them' to donate them to another 'infertile couple' to let them remain frozen, or to let them thaw and be disposed. Against the negatives and the problems there are the cases amply documented here of happy parents who at last have had their dream come true. But then there are too the questions of the kinds of 'identity problems' many of the offspring have especially when there has been no connection with genetic parents. The unregulated exploitative attitude of some of the service- provider businesses suggests much greater government regulation is in order. There is it seems to me a real question of whether the overall communal situation of the United States would not be benefited by scaling back some of this activity. After all in the United States one out of every three children, unrelated to ART is born out of wedlock. Does it make much sense to produce more children who may face psychological and social problems of a severe kind? This book is a very realistic picture of what is happening in the world of Artificial Reproduction. Players from all sides were interviewed, and have their points-of- view expressed. This is a vital book on a vital subject.
0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.