AAA 2018 Call for Papers: Reproductive Resistances

Panel Title:

Reproductive Resistances: Subverting, Reclaiming and Expanding Ways of Doing and Knowing about Reproduction


Jessica Posega, PhD Candidate

Department of Anthropology, Syracuse University, USA


Marcia C. Inhorn, PhD, MPH

William K. Lanman Jr. Professor

Anthropology and International Affairs

Council on Middle East Studies

Yale University, USA


Panel Abstract:

The anthropological study of reproductive health has long highlighted contestations in normative, medical, legal, and local forms of reproduction. Individuals, communities, and professionals contest, resist, and extend the boundaries of acceptable and understandable ways of knowing reproduction. Resistances in the form of movements, medical advancements, or reclaimed knowledges continue to push and challenge perceptions of what reproduction is, what it looks like, and how and when it can and should be done. Transplanted uteri, trans-pregnancies, child-free by choice, and reclaiming of indigenous birth practices are all different ways of challenging the pervasive biomedical and cultural understandings of reproduction. Legal sites of contestation include, but are not limited to abortion restrictions such as American TRAP laws or Ireland’s Eighth Amendment, which also restricts choice in maternity care.

This panel will engage with the concept of reproductive resistance, which has a multitude of meanings. I seek papers that engage broadly with the idea of resistance in relationship to reproduction and engage the following questions:

How do local, personalized experiences of fighting or subverting the culturally normative expectations of reproduction vary? In what ways are legal systems related to reproduction being challenged by medical advancements, social movements, and/or individuals? How do perceptions of self and embodied experiences contest normative medico-legal understandings of reproduction?

Ideally, the focus of this panel will elucidate the diverse ways in which human beings choose to reproduce, challenge expectations of reproduction, fight for reproductive justice and redefine the possibilities of reproduction. Broadly, papers should focus on but are not limited to, the following topics: sterilization, adoption, abortion, trans- pregnancies, home birth, and indigenous midwifery. Reproductive resistances are both gaining and losing ground legally, socially, and medically and it is now more important than ever to engage with these dynamic and divisive movements, communities, and individuals. Papers in this panel may ideally include a thread of reflexive methodology that highlights the awareness and resistance of researchers to simply reproduce disciplinary ideologies and to push the boundaries of ethnography.

Abstracts which address the above questions and topics are welcome as well as those that broadly address the topic of reproductive resistance.

Call for Abstracts:

I invite those interested in the panel to submit abstracts of up to 250 words that address the topic of reproductive resistance. Please send your abstracts to<> by April 2, 2018. Decisions about acceptance for this panel will be emailed by April 6, 2018.

Please Note:

AAA requires registration before April 16, 2018 for all presenters. Registration fee is refunded for presenters not accepted.

AAA Membership:

2018 AAA Annual Meeting Registration:

2018 AAA Annual Meeting information:

Jessica Posega
PhD Candidate
Syracuse University

Contact Info

Canadian Anthropology Society (CASCA)
c/o Karli Whitmore
125 rue Jean de la Londe, #301
Baie d'Urfe (Québec) H9X 3T8