Gestational Labors: Care Politics and Surrogates’ Struggle

  • Sophie Lewis
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Globalization and Embodiment book series (PSGE)


In this chapter, Sophie Lewis discusses the burgeoning industry of commercial surrogate gestation, with reference to Baby Gammy. Lewis shows that we are reluctant to countenance unity between the politics of surrogates and other, paid or unpaid, reproducers. Contesting this tendency makes it possible to theorize surrogacy politics as continuous with wider anti-racist and care politics that reinvent family. The Gammy case usefully demonstrates the necessity of allying the common interests of surrogate workers with others implicated in such struggles over social reproduction. The challenge, then, for an anti-capitalist surrogacy politics, is to seek to take the utopian promises of ‘assisted’ reproduction seriously without falling into the trap of abstracting reproduction from other social relations, as do technophobic feminisms, or infertility framings, concerned with ‘life itself’.


Surrogacy Gestational surrogacy Wages for housework Politics of reproduction Reproductive technology Gammy 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Sophie Lewis
    • 1
  1. 1.The University of ManchesterManchesterUK

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