Present knowledge of genetics and assisted reproduction make fertile ground for a new type of eugenics: reproductive genetics. Proponents of reproductive genetics aim to separate these techniques from the problematic and negative connotations associated with historical eugenic policies by claiming them as part of the liberal eugenic movement. In-vitro fertilization (IVF), the market for sperm and eggs, and prenatal genetic testing allow conscious decision-making regarding the potential genetic make-up of children. Decisions are made in a gendered and politicized environment, shaping understandings of genes, eggs, and sperm around stereotypes and ideal social norms. In choosing “desirable” characteristics, whatever they may be, the characteristics avoided are classified as “undesirable.” It is not necessarily wrong or immoral to engage in this decision-making, but to avoid the eugenics of our past, we must acknowledge that reproductive genetics processes engage with ideas of gendered bodies, (im)morality, and medical authority.
Bodnar, MaryKate K.
"Reproductive Genetics: Desired Genes, Gendered Ethics, and Eugenic Echoes,"
The Hilltop Review: Vol. 7:
2, Article 6.
Available at: https://scholarworks.wmich.edu/hilltopreview/vol7/iss2/6