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Creating families can no longer be described by heterosexual reproduction in the intimacy of a couple's home and the privacy of their bedroom. To the contrary, babies can be brought into families through complex matrixes involving lawyers, coordinators, surrogates, 'brokers', donors, sellers, endocrinologists, and without any traditional forms of intimacy. In direct response to the need and desire to parent, men, women, and couples - gay and straight - have turned to viable, alternative means: baby markets. This book examines the ways in which Westerners create families through private, market processes. From homosexual couples skirting Mother Nature by going to the assisted reproductive realm and buying the sperm or ova that will complete the reproductive process, to Americans travelling abroad to acquire children in China, Korea, or Ethiopia, market dynamics influence how babies and toddlers come into Western families. Michele Goodwin and a group of contributing experts explore how financial interests, aesthetic preferences, pop culture, children's needs, race, class, sex, religion, and social customs influences the law and economics of baby markets.
Cracked Open is Miriam Zoll's eye-opening account of growing into womanhood with the simultaneous opportunities offered by the U. S. women's movement and new discoveries in reproductive technologies. Influenced by the pervasive media and cultural messages suggesting that science had finally eclipsed Mother Nature, Zoll postponed motherhood until the age of 40. When things didn't progress as she had hoped, she enters a world of medical seduction and bioethical quagmires. Desperate to conceive, she surrenders to unproven treatments and procedures only to learn that the odds of becoming a mother through reproductive technologies are far less than she and her generation had been led to believe.
The dark side of body part trading operates in a dynamic fashion, full of mystery, intrigue, and ambition. On the one hand, black and gray markets are illegal, but also pioneering and inventive; and although this type of criminal activity requires a level of dexterity and innovation, the point should not be lost that these markets thrive and flourish, sometimes in view of law. On the other hand, altruistic body part procurement is mired by low participation, which encourages black market transactions. Thousands of sick patients die each year without the hope of receiving an organ or bone marrow donation through the altruistic procurement system, so they turn to the dark side. This book offers a frank conversation about altruism in the global body market. It exposes how researchers exploit their patients' ignorance to harvest tissue samples, blood, and other biologics without consent for research and patent development. The book chronicles exploitation in the name of altruism, including the nonconsensual use of children in dangerous clinical trials, and analyzes social and legal commitments to the value of altruism - offering an important critique of the vulnerability of altruism to corruption, coercion, pressure, and other negative externalities.
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