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Choices Women MakeAgency in Domestic Violence, Assisted Reproduction, and Sex Work$
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Carisa R. Showden

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780816655953

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816655953.001.0001

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Mum’s the Word

Mum’s the Word

Assisted Reproduction and the Ideology of Motherhood

(p.93) Chapter 3 Mum’s the Word
Choices Women Make

Carisa R. Showden

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter discusses how Assisted Reproduction Technologies (ARTs) affected women’s agency. Mothering and experiencing motherhood are the ultimate forms of woman’s agency. Yet with the emergence of ARTs, patriarchal norms are reinforced and woman’s desire to undergo biological motherhood is undermined. Some argue, however, that ARTs improve the freedom of a woman to whether or not to engage in another pregnancy; to simply put it, freedom to practice the sense of economic practicality. This chapter explores how ARTs somehow promote women’s agency within the context of pronatalism, a movement that encourages childbearing, through citing the works of sociology experts in the field of womanhood, reproduction, and motherhood.

Keywords:   Assisted Reproduction Technologies, mothering, motherhood, biological motherhood, economic practicality, pronatalism, reproduction, womanhood

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