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Role of the Cyborg in Rethinking Gender and The Nature of Human/Technology/Animal Intersections - Essay Example

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Role of the Cyborg in Rethinking Gender and The Nature of Human/Technology/Animal Intersections

In the U.S, the increase in medical reimbursement, itself a result of intense lobbying efforts by advocacy groups like Resolve, coupled with the increased militancy of groups οf other mothers to be admitted to clientele, led to more and more people who did not conform with the heterosexist standard utilizing reproductive technologies than ever before. Thus, both single heterosexual women and partnered and single lesbians with no medically defined reproductive "pathology" have increasingly been using ARTs, not only to avoid heterosexual coitus, but also because of their collaborative reproductive potential. In addition, peri-menopausal women over 40, who may be poor candidates for IVF have been utilizing a host of other technologies such as hyperovarian stimulation via pharmacological intervention and IUI, donor egg, donor embryo or traditional surrogacy. Technology providers have responded to the politicized demand for inclusion by queer populations such as single heterosexual women, lesbians, gays, and older people who's access is now largely based on ability to pay. Entirely new discourses on what constitutes pregnancy and motherhood have been created through the increasing employment of these technologies by 'other' subjectivities, and by separating reproduction into its genetic, biological and social aspects, these discourses serve to confront the former giveness of reproduction and performativly declare its unnaturalness, which is to say its social constructedness. As Farquhar writes, "By definitively separating sex from reproduction, reproductive technologies break the naturalized assumption that reproduction is heterosexual and heterosocial. By fetishizing the social criterion οf the "[heterosexual couple]," medical discourse invokes the heterosexist standard only to disrupt it by its asexual and third party donor interventions" (2000, pp217-218). It is illuminating that "natural" pregnancy as a hegemonic category was only called into existence as a political discourse with the manifestation of its binary opposite, "artificial" reproduction. Natural pregnancy is not then, some a historical woman's experience that gets fragmented and sullied by new technologies, but is rather a discursive manifestation of these new technologies concomitant to the arising 'other' forms of motherhood that it has positioned itself in binary opposition to. Rather than condemn these processes as a "system of dismembered motherhood", in which women will be "technologically ravaged", and threatens something intrinsically "natural", an alternative approach would be to celebrate the proliferation οf diversity and the subversion of binary hegemonies that such a position offers. By separating pregnancy, birth and parenting into their genetic, biological and social legal aspects, ARTs change and challenge the fetishizisation of blood-ties, the nuclear reproductive norm and their corollary sexual identities. They declare the constructedness of reproduction by posing alternative ways to conceive. Reproduction can now occur beyond the marital master bedroom, and beyond the phallocentric script οf heterosexual sex, and beyond their corollary identities, prescribed lifestyles and sexual roles. ...Show more
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Summary

The essay "Role of the Cyborg in Rethinking Gender and The Nature of Human/Technology/Animal Intersections" describes that Cyborg is a cybernetic organism that plays important role in rethinking gender and the nature of human, technology and animal intersections. It is a self-regulating integration of artificial and natural systems. …
Role of the Cyborg in Rethinking Gender and The Nature of Human/Technology/Animal Intersections
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