in Reproduction by Design

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780226560694
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226560717 | DOI:

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This book argues that reproduction was a key site for many of those debating the merits of the modern mechanized world. It describes the novels, plays, and science fiction, and the work of biologists, psychiatrists, sexologists, and medical scientists. It then emphasizes a cluster of ideas and images, fears and fantasies revolving around the notion that the boundaries between natural and artificial in reproduction were collapsing. Moreover, it argues that interwar discussions of sexuality, reproduction, endocrinology, eugenics, and environmentalism were hopelessly entangled. It specifically outlines the fictional investigations of the impact of modernization on sexuality. It then turns to key debates over the modernization of sexuality in the first half of the twentieth century. Furthermore, it considers the works of medical scientists. It deals with the inevitable backlash against some key aspects of modernization. Finally, an overview of the chapters included in this book is given.

Keywords: reproduction; sexuality; endocrinology; eugenics; environmentalism; modernization

Chapter.  2661 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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