Health Care Analysis

, Volume 8, Issue 1, pp 19–26 | Cite as

Why Commercial Surrogate Motherhood Unethically Commodifies Women and Children: Reply to McLachlan and Swales

  • Elizabeth S. Anderson


McLachlan and Swales dispute my arguments against commercial surrogatemotherhood. In reply, I argue that commercial surrogate contractsobjectionably commodify children because they regardparental rights over children not as trusts, to be allocated in the bestinterests of the child, but as like property rights, to be allocatedat the will o the parents. They also express disrespect for mothers, bycompromising their inalienable right to act in the best interest of theirchildren, when this interest calls for mothers to assert a custody rightin their children.

commodification Commercial Surrogate Motherhood surrogacy Brazier Report medical ethics 


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  1. Anderson, E. (1993) Value in Ethics and Economics. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  2. Kant, I. (1964) Groundwork for the Metaphysics of Morals (Trans. H.J. Paton). New York: Harper.Google Scholar
  3. McLachlan, M.V. and Swales, J.K. (2000) Babies, Child Bearers and Commodification. Health Care Analysis (this issue).Google Scholar
  4. Satz, D. (1992) Markets in Women's Reproductive Labor. Philosophy and Public Affairs 21, 107–131.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elizabeth S. Anderson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PhilosophyUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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