France Winddance Twine is a Scholar-in-Residence at the Beatrice Bain Research Group at the University of California at Berkeley. She is also a Professor of Sociology and Black Studies at the University of California at Santa Barbara. She is an ethnographer, a critical race theorist and a documentary filmmaker. Her recent publications include Geographies of Privilege (2013) and A White Side of Black Britain: interracial intimacy and racial literacy (2010).
Outsourcing the Womb: Race, Class and Gestational Surrogacy in a Global Marketby France Winddance Twine
A quiet revolution has been taking place during the past three decades. The way that children enter families has changed radically among upper middle class families. In the 1980s infertility increasing became defined as a medical problem that could be solved with assisted reproductive technologies (ART) rather than through adoption. Asexual or ‘assisted
A quiet revolution has been taking place during the past three decades. The way that children enter families has changed radically among upper middle class families. In the 1980s infertility increasing became defined as a medical problem that could be solved with assisted reproductive technologies (ART) rather than through adoption. Asexual or ‘assisted conception’ involving medical technologies such as in vitro fertilization and embryo transfers began to replace sexual reproduction for infertile couples. Third parties, referred to as surrogates are hired to assist individuals and/or couples who wish to conceive and child with whom they share a genetic tie. This has resulted in a ‘surrogate baby boom’.
Outsourcing the Womb provides a critical introduction to the global surrogacy market. A comparative analysis of the assisted reproductive technology and surrogacy industry in Egypt, Israel, India and the United States disentangles the intersecting roles of race, religion, class inequality, religious law, and global capitalism. Gestational surrogacy challenges the idea of ‘natural’ reproduction and of the meaning of parenthood. What role should the state play in providing individuals and families with access to reproductive technologies? This book concludes with a discussion of ‘reproductive justice’.
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