Beyond Expectation: Lesbian/Bi/Queer Women and Assisted Conception
Published: April 2010© 2010
Imprint: University of Toronto Press
Page Count: 304 Pages
Dimensions: 6.24 x 9.37
304 Pages, 6.24 x 9.37 x 0.88 in
An in-depth study of lesbian, bi, and queer women's experiences of thinking about and trying to become a parent, Beyond Expectation draws on eighty-two narrative interviews conducted during the late 1990s in British Columbia. Jacquelyne Luce chronicles these women's experiences, which took place from 1980 to 2000, during a period that saw significant changes to the governance of assisted reproduction and the status of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender parents and same-sex partners.
Beyond Expectation looks closely at the changing contexts in which women's experiences occurred and draws attention to complex issues such as 'contracting' relationships, mediating understandings of biology and genetics, and decision-making amidst various social, legal, and medical developments. Luce skillfully juxtaposes the stories of her interviewees with the wider public discourses about lesbian/bi/queer parenting and reproductive technology and highlights gaps in existing legislative reforms. Most importantly, Beyond Expectation foregrounds the lived experiences of lesbian, bi, and queer women as they negotiate kinship at the intersection of reproduction, technology, and politics.
'Luce provides new insights into lesbian reproduction practices and the discourses that surround them, making this book worthwhile reading for sociologists interested in reproductive technologies, family, queer studies, kinship studies, and the intersections of law and medicine.' Alicia VandeVusse, American Journal of Sociology; vol 116:06:2011
‘This a well accomplished exploration of queer women’s trajectories of trying to conceive, and the way in which their lives are situated within broader social structures.’ Petra Nordqvist, Sociology of Health & Illness; vol 33:06:2011
'Beyond Expectation explores the narratives of assisted conception among lesbian, bi, and queer women in Canada. Jacquelyne Luce's ability to set the particularities of women's lives and ideas into conversation with changing legislation, medical technology, and the varying social relationships that inform both conception and parenting allows her to demonstrate that "lesbian parenting" is not one set of behaviours, but a phrase that encompasses the actions of individuals with diverse lived experiences, aspirations, and identities. The richness of these women's personal stories adds invaluable nuance and complexity to this original, engaging work.' Lisa M. Mitchell, Department of Anthropology, University of Victoria