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Problems of Conception: Issues of Law, Biotechnology, Individuals and Kinship

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Problems of Conception

Issues of Law, Biotechnology, Individuals and Kinship

Marit Melhuus

186 pages, 1 table, bibliog., index

ISBN  978-0-85745-502-4 $135.00/£99.00 / Hb / Published (August 2012)

eISBN 978-0-85745-503-1 eBook

View CartYour country: - edit  Buy the eBook from these vendorsRequest a Review or Examination Copy (in Digital Format)Recommend to your LibraryAvailable in GOBI®


This is a very interesting and well written book. The first chapter is one of the best written ‘opening speeches’ I have read in a very, very long time. It is an important contribution to the comparative study of kinship/biotechnology/law.”  ·  Annika Rabo, University of Stockholm


The Biotechnology Act in Norway, one of the most restrictive in Europe, forbids egg donation and surrogacy and has rescinded the anonymity clause with respect to donor insemination. Thus, it limits people’s choice as to how they can procreate within the boundaries of the nation state. The author pursues this significant datum ethnographically and addresses the issues surrounding contemporary biopolitics in Norway. This involves investigating such fundamental questions as the relation between individual and society, meanings of kinship and relatedness, the moral status of the embryo and the role of science, religion and ethics in state policies. Even though the book takes reproductive technologies as its focus, it reveals much about vital processes that are central to contemporary Norwegian society.

Marit Melhuus is Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of Oslo. She has previously worked in Argentina and Mexico, focusing on issues of development, economic anthropology, gender and morality.

Subject: Anthropology (General)SociologyMedical Anthropology
Area: Northern Europe


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