Vienna STS Talk: Charlotte Kroløkke

07.04.2016 17:30

Global Fluids. The Cultural Economy in Eggs and Urine

Talk presented by Charlotte Kroløkke (Department for the Study of Culture, University of Southern Denmark)

The body has become a goldmine of usable parts. In the United States, a woman may earn $20,000-35,000 as a surrogate; a sperm provider will receive in the range of $35-200 for his gametes, while egg donation ranges between $5,000-10,000. What may be considered bodily waste, excesses, usable parts, vacant bodies, or simply extractable material has contributed to an emerging relationship between the reproductive body, science and commerce.

This presentation is about the ways that pregnant women’s urine and women’s eggs have become exchangeable. In the case of women’s eggs, they move from being constructed as excess and wasteful material to becoming understood not only as gifts but also, as evident in the Spanish case and in the case of Danish women going to Spain for egg donation, as outgoing and loving potential. When eggs enter the fertility industry, they acquire a biography of their own frequently drawing upon conventional (and national) stereotypes, fantasies, and imaginations.

Department of Science and Technology Studies
Seminar Room STS, NIG, 1010 Wien, Universitätsstraße 7/II/6th floor