Add a Comment
Save my information
The essence of this article is inherently reactionary. Even supposing the worst, that artificial wombs do persist a patriarchal stereotype, such negative impacts would again be greatly over shadowed by how such technology would alleviate women from the harmful repercussions of this patriarchal view.
The article makes no mention of this simple point…merely going from the now prohibited abuse in Indian surrogacy clinics to how artificial wombs should be viewed with the same prejudice for simply having a small metaphysical connection to it. The point of this article isn’t doing the technology justice and instead smacks of blind reactionism that under ordinary circumstances would only be useful to women who entertained the feeling of having power over the life or death of a fetus.
What would an alternative that better suited the fetus-gestator as one model? Genetically alter us women so birth is as easy and pailess as going to the toilet? That won’t change negative patriarchal views regarding women and reproduction either, it’d just make more indifference to the already pervasive apathy to the plight of childbirth.
Without a doubt, with fertility rates slowing and being at dangerously low levels in some parts of the world, the potential this technology offers could be absolutely essential for humanities survival while continuing in maintaining the level of civilasation both sexes can enjoy.
We have always had mad scientists but now, particularly in medicine, we so often have mad science. With the world already hugely populated, why on earth do we need to find ways to produce life artificially?
How anyone can think that an artificial womb is capable of creating healthy human life is the real question. We will not know for another century what IVF effects there will be. That is when the first artificially conceived humans have grown up to live reasonably healthy lives and given birth to children who do the same. If we take 70 as a reasonable longevity, that means 140 years from the first artificially conceived human, which means we have a century to go before we can know what long-term effects there are from such an unnatural process.
From drowning a woman’s body in synthetic hormones to force it to produce more eggs than would be possible in nature; collecting the eggs and storing them in a solution concocted in a laboratory; collecting sperm and forcing one too weak to do the job in nature into an egg; then, if fertilisation happens, preparing a woman’s womb with more synthetic hormones – remembering as Louis Pasteur discovered, a synthetic can be chemically identical but it is not identical at a molecular level; and then forcing the egg into the womb lining.
I mean seriously, how can any sane person think that will not have negative effects, even more so on females who are born with all their eggs?
There is a lot missing from this piece but for me the most glaring is the lack of understanding of the physical and emotiona. (and I would also add spiritual) connection between mother and baby. There are real emotional benefits that happen during pregnancy between mom and baby that I believe (though I am not a scientist) are important for the after-birth mother/baby bond. There are also physical benefits to the baby when vaginal births occur including a healthy microbiome. Birth is painful, messy, lots of bodily fluids. This is life. Only wealthy women would be able to afford this too so it will only add to the inequality we are experiencing in today’s world. In short, I feel this is a ridiculous idea regardless of whether it helps or harms feminism.