reproutopia deposited Defending Intimacy against What? Limits of Antisurrogacy Feminisms in the group Feminist Humanities on Humanities Commons 5 years, 10 months ago
As surrogacy services expand globally, more and more nations are moving to ban the practice. Calls for its abolition couched in feminist terms returned to prominence in international public life in 2012. The resurgence follows a lapse since the heyday of the Feminist International Network of Resistance to Reproductive and Genetic Engineering (FINRRAGE) in the 1980s. In their moral opposition to prostitution (conflated with slavery) and cyborg human embodiment (which critics term “medical abuse”), the agendas of such feminisms and Christian conservatism overlap. This raises the question, what is the enemy against which childbearing is to be defended? This article analyzes the Euro-American and Australian anglophone feminist-abolitionist stance toward surrogacy, contextualizing it in relation to sex-worker-exclusionary antitrafficking, on the one hand, and transphobic imaginaries, on the other. These truncated abolitionisms, I argue, perform opposition to commodification rather than capitalism and encrypt profoundly antifeminist ideas under the guise of fighting patriarchy. Where reproductive assistance is concerned, justice is ultimately hindered rather than advanced by such technophobic body politics.