Rewriting the Family

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:
Rewriting the Family

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People start out on the fertility journey wanting to be a normal family. Those who are faced with giving up the idea of a biological child are still concerned with being a normal family; indeed, they become more concerned with this issue than they were before. This chapter appraises the difficulties entailing an alternative parenthood, specifically in the form of the cultural ideology of a non-biological offspring. The issue of achieving/projecting normalcy assumes paramountcy in the concerns of the incumbent parents. When people are able to consider non-biological alternatives, it is because they have ceased to equate gender identity with biological functions. Three issues assume importance in resorting to an alternative route to parenthood: making peace with a non-biogenetic issue; incorporating normalcy in and around the family and the child; dealing with the fact that the family will not embody the cultural ideology of biological parenthood.

Keywords: normal family; biological child; cultural ideology; non-biological alternative; gender identity; biological functions

Chapter.  7250 words. 

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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