Historically, motherhood has long been the defining aspect of womanhood. Chinese traditional culture emphasized that continuation of the bloodline is the filial responsibility of sons and daughters-in-law. Thus, infertility is often socially stigmatized as the loss of ability of a woman as a whole. Assisted reproductive technology through the use of donated gametes provides an alternative option for women to reconfigure womanhood through the process of childbearing. In 2014, in-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with eight women who have experienced donor-assisted conception (DAC) and successfully given birth to a child. Through interpretative phenomenological analysis, a unique framework of how DAC acculturates and protects compromised womanhood among Chinese females emerged. Findings presented in this paper shed light on how infertility affects womanhood, and the extent to which DAC affects women's social and self-identities.
Scopus Subject Areas
- Gender Studies
- Sociology and Political Science
- Assisted reproductive technology
- Third-party reproductive technology