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Book review: International Surrogacy Arrangements

Abstract : Should -and if so, how should -the international surrogacy market be regulated? Is access to cross-border surrogacy a right attaching to the free movement of persons, or a risk for women in developing countries? Is this an issue of personal ethics or of global economics? Arguments pit personal autonomy against public policy; democracy against sovereignty; the right to a child against the protection of women; anthropology against discrimination. The heated moral, religious and political debates which in recent years have followed spectacular revolutions in reproductive technology are naturally reflected in widely divergent national standpoints, of which international surrogacy agreements - that is, between intended parents issuing (usually) from a surrogacy-hostile jurisdiction and a surrogate in a surrogacy-friendly environment -have become the focal point. The ensuing conflicts of laws are all the more complex in that they also take place in the wake of the liberalisation of same-sex marriage in a growing number of jurisdictions, so that the issue of surrogacy arises as one of the right to a child; restricting its benefit to sterile heterosexual couples then appears as inherently discriminatory. But the backdrop of such conflicts is also one of increasing global economic and social inequality. Whereas the cross-border demand for children tends to come from developed Western (often surrogacy-hostile) countries (such as France), some developing states (such as India), when not strictly prohibitive on religious grounds, have encouraged or abetted a growing surrogacy industry which cannot but take its toll on a generation of young women. [First paragraph]
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Submitted on : Wednesday, December 8, 2021 - 11:57:21 AM
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Horatia Muir Watt. Book review: International Surrogacy Arrangements. Edinburgh Law Review, Edinburgh University Press, 2014, 18, pp.312 - 313. ⟨hal-03470477⟩

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