Fetal/Fatal Knowledge: New Reproductive Technologies and Family-Building Strategies in India (CSCSI)

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This groundbreaking book explores the issues of son preference and female-selective abortion in a rural peasant community in India that is experiencing urbanization, rapid economic transformation, and social change as a result of exposure to the wider forces of globalization. Using a case study approach, the book includes the compelling personal stories and experiences of men and women in the village of Shahargoan. Through these stories, the author examines patriarchy, government policies, and the intricate and dynamic relationships between cultural preferences for family size and sex composition, and the use of new reproductive technologies and abortion in realizing these preferences.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780495095255
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning
  • Publication date: 2/2/2009
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 153
  • Product dimensions: 6.40 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

Sunil K. Khanna is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Oregon State University. He received a Ph.D. in Physical Anthropology from the University of Delhi, India, in 1988 and a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology from Syracuse University in 1995. He has been teaching at Oregon State University since 1995 and regularly conducts research in India and the United States. He is the author of numerous research articles and reports in the areas of family-building strategies, son preference, female-selective abortion, minority health, and cultural competency in health care.

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Table of Contents

1. FIELDWORK ON A SENSITIVE ISSUE. Research versus Advocacy. My Experience of Fieldwork. Native Anthropologist. Entering Shahargoan. Long-term Fieldwork. A Changing Community. Applied Anthropology in a Changing World. 2. SHAHARGOAN: "THE VILLAGE OF MY ANCESTORS". JAT Characteristics. The Story of Shahargoan. The Pre-1970s Period. Historical Legacy. 3. URBAN TRANSFORMATION: THE POST-1970S PERIOD. From Village to "Urban Agglomeration". The Rich and the Poor. The Conflict Within. Intensification of Gender Inequality. Urban Men and Rural Women. The Custom of Wearing the Veil (Purdah). Education, Identity, and Marriage. Traditional Marriage and Prestige. 4. POPULATION GROWTH AND "MISSING" GIRLS. India's Population: More Than One Billion People. National Population Policy. Family Planning in Shahargoan. Preferred Family Size. "Missing" Women. "Missing" Girls in Shahargoan. Opinions about "Missing" Girls. 5. GLOBAL TECHNOLOGIES AND LOCAL IMPLICATIONS. "Miracle" Technology in Prenatal Diagnostic Clinics. Precision Ultrasound Clinic. The Science of "Miracle" Technologies. Culture and "Miracle" Technologies. Ultrasonography in Shahargoan. "Misuse" or Choice. 6. ACCESSING DIAGNOSTIC AND ABORTION SERVICES. Traditional Knowledge and Prenatal Sex Identification. The Influence of Family Planning Programs. Attitude and Behavior Differences Based on Socio-Economic Status. Finding Clinics and Doctors. Reliability Questioned and Rechecked. Male Feticide. Appropriate Timing for Fetal Sex Identification. Limitations of Survey Results. "Quick and Easy" Abortion. Birth Order and Prenatal Sex Identification. Managing Social and Psychological Stress. Morality and Resistance. 7. LEGAL REGULATION. The Prenatal Diagnostic Techniques (Regulation & Prevention of Misuse) Act. Consequences of Criminalization. "Quick and Cheap" Prenatal Sex Identification Tests. The "Costs and Benefits" of Criminalization. Sex-Selective Conception. Limitations of the Law and Future Projects. 8. ADVOCATING FOR CHANGE. Patriarchy and New Reproductive Technologies in Asia. "Missing" Girls in China. Comparing India and China. The Persistence of Patriarchy. Diffusion and Regulation of Technology. Morality versus Health. Government Programs. Community Based Strategies. Linking Policy with Communities. References. Index.

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