Chapter

Embodied Technology

Gay Becker

in The Elusive Embryo

Published by University of California Press

Published in print December 2000 | ISBN: 9780520224308
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520925243 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520224308.003.0010
Embodied Technology

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This chapter explores the new reproductive technologies that emphasize transformation, and, in doing so, naturalize technology. They allow people to view embryos and fetuses as children. As couples become immersed in a complex process, the embryos become children who are part of them. The specific attributes of new reproductive technologies contribute to the embodiment of embryos. Two key components associated with these technologies are visualization, as in the use of ultrasound and other technologies that reveal what was previously invisible, and ritual. These phenomena imbue the process with cultural meaning, enabling embryos to become embodied by bridging what happens inside and outside the body and making it more accessible, experientially, to women. The ability to visualize aspects of medical procedures has altered the experience of infertility treatment.

Keywords: new reproductive technologies; embryos; visualization; ritual; infertility treatment

Chapter.  6109 words. 

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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