In the last decades reproductive technologies have rapidly spread from metropolitan research centers to countries that differ enormously in a number of terms. This panel will discuss how such technologies are invented, dispersed and imported into various contexts where they are locally "translated".
In the last decades a revolution has taken place in the field of human reproduction. Medical reproductive technologies -ultrasound, assisted reproduction, prenatal diagnosis- changed the way we experience conception, gestation and birth, while introducing new possibilities and choices -reproduction without sex, freezing of genetic material, posthumous reproduction, sex choice, genetic screening. These technologies have rapidly spread from metropolitan research centers to countries that differ enormously in terms of religion, ethical reasoning, legal system, state intervention, kinship formation, reproduction needs and desires. This panel will discuss how medical reproductive technologies are invented and dispersed through the collaboration of doctors, research centers, patient groups, public/private funding, and via practices of knowledge exchange, such as participation in international conferences, circulation of publications and visual material, manufacture and acquisition of novel laboratory equipment. Additionally, it aims to problematize how these global technologies are imported into various cultural contexts where they are locally "translated", transformed, accepted or contested while being appropriated by users through networks of interested parties. Papers may address the following issues: -Global and local histories of medical reproductive technologies focusing on the networks between professionals -The transnational circulation of key texts, films and equipment -The formation of legal/ethical/religious committees that interpret and adjust global medical technologies to fit local contexts -The creation of networks among patients/activists that enable or discourage the proliferation of such technologies -The transmission of personal experience and advice regarding the use/misuse of reproductive technologies (via internet forums, word of mouth, support groups)