Women renting their wombs and giving birth to children for immediate delivery to other adults—such as infertile or same sex couples or single adults—have emerged as a distinct class of commercial provider. Women working as surrogates, while frequently motivated to help others wanting a family, are typically paid for their gestational services, most often subject to the terms of commercial contract. Informal agreements can unexpectedly become legal disputes, the outcomes of which are fast defining surrogates as a subclass of women.
Breeders: A Subclass of Women? shares the stories of four women, and the unexpected consequences and heart-wrenching emotions as they are deprived of their maternal identity and personal autonomy in compensated service to people of greater means.
Surrogacy fast becoming one of the major issues of the 21st century but the practice is fraught with complex implications for women, children, and families. What is the impact on the women who serve as surrogates and on the children who are born from surrogacy? In what ways might money complicate things? What about altruistic surrogacy done for a family member or close friend? Is surrogacy a beautiful, loving act or does it simply degrade pregnancy to a service and a baby to a product? Can we find a middle ground? Should we even look for one?
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Editor’s note: The producer of this documentary advocates feminism as a solution to the very real consequences of ever changing world of surrogacy. We’re not back sliding here at LAF, we just have a great respect of truth when we see it.
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Symposium on Biomedical ethics for birth part one
Symposium on Biomedical ethics for birth part two