Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

With or against nature? IVF, gender and reproductive agency in Athens, Greece

Contents:

Author Info

  • Paxson, Heather
Registered author(s):

    Abstract

    Based on ethnographic research in Athens, this paper argues that in vitro fertilization (IVF) in urban Greece does not so much make explicit the social construction of nature, as has been argued of the US and UK, but is accommodated into a prior understanding of "nature" as socially realized. Calling upon an ethic of maternal sacrifice, Athenian women see themselves taking charge of a natural process, often correcting damage done to them by nature. A sense that adults should produce children in order to realize their natures and be completed as women and men also poses particular, and gendered, ethical questions of fertility technologies: is this a proper way of realizing nature? While those who successfully use IVF depict assisted conception as "a natural" and "proper way of reproduction," some fear that others will view their child as abnormal. Contests over "normal" reproduction are articulated to a tradition/modernity dichotomy which Athenians discuss through an idiom of maturity. Believing that Greek society is not always mature enough to understand how natural IVF really is, couples turning to IVF follow one of the two strategies: to educate others or to completely hide it. Both groups want to guard against a view of IVF--in the terms of this volume--as a kind of "reproduction gone awry."

    Download Info

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/B6VBF-46VJNTT-1/2/0cf4ade3e42a76ec74077afbdf3bf46b
    Download Restriction: Full text for ScienceDirect subscribers only

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.

    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Social Science & Medicine.

    Volume (Year): 56 (2003)
    Issue (Month): 9 (May)
    Pages: 1853-1866

    as in new window
    Handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:56:y:2003:i:9:p:1853-1866

    Contact details of provider:
    Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/journaldescription.cws_home/315/description#description

    Order Information:
    Postal: http://www.elsevier.com/wps/find/supportfaq.cws_home/regional
    Web: http://www.elsevier.com/orderme/journalorderform.cws_home/315/journalorderform1/orderooc/id=654&ref=654_01_ooc_1&version=01

    Related research

    Keywords: IVF Reproductive technologies Greece Nature/culture Gender;

    References

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    Citations

    Lists

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    Statistics

    Access and download statistics

    Corrections

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:socmed:v:56:y:2003:i:9:p:1853-1866. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei).

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.