Publication details

Biotechnologies in reproductive medicine — Janus-faced challenge

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Year of publication 2014
Type Conference abstract
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Description The 2010 European Commission research on the topic of Biotechnology shows that most of European inhabitants are very trusting of expert and scientific knowledge. The most of European citizens tend to believe that the experts, predominantly scientists and doctors, are the ones who should decide about various aspects of biotechnology, and should defend the public interest. Faith in the experts, scientists, and science in general is also confirmed by the data from my research. From the sociological point of view the paper analyses the ART treatment, particularly prenatal testing and using of biotechnologies, as example of specific biopolitical rationality, biosociality or concept of science as culture (Rose, Rabinow, Franklin) which have emerged in current reproductive medicine in the last years. The category of biosecurity with reference to the issues of prenatal testing, is part of a practice that is intended to help avoiding birth defects or enabling the enhancement of embryos. However, in the ambivalent janus-faced spirit of the modernistic demand of expert knowledge for definition, recording, representation and administration, a new type of risk and bioethical questions are generated. According to Rayana Rapp, new technologies in reproductive medicine create the possibilities for new types of treatment and enhancement, and also for new types of risk and danger, but without the possibility of reflecting on the entire process. An ethnographical and narrative analysis of Czech genomics and reproductive medicine field concerning the popular/scientific representations of human genomics are concerned. Particularly interviews with genetics, embryologists, IVF process actors as well are analysed.
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