Category: ‘English’

SI inverte la rotta sui “bambini trans”?

23 Aprile 2019 Posted by webmater

All’inizio di aprile il Times ha pubblicato diversi articoli allarmati sulle transizioni di minorenni effettuate dalla Tavistock Clinic – qui i links agli articoli:

Calls to end ‘transgender experiment on children’

It feels like conversion therapy for gay children, say clinicians (il più sconvolgente)

Families ‘exploited by gender lobby groups pushing for treatment’

Doubts over evidence for using drugs on the young

Tavistock GIDS statement


Cosa succede in Canada

1 Giugno 2016 Posted by webmater

Un interessante articolo in inglese su dove portano i regolamenti e i “rimborsi spese”, sotto la spinta dall’interesse di cliniche e avvocati a diffondere la maternità surrogata:

qui alcuni estratti (per chi non sa l’inglese: google translate è migliorato tantissimo):

Under Canada’s Assisted Human Reproduction Act, it’s legal to use another person’s eggs, sperm or uterus to bring a child into the world. It’s legal to pay a doctor to extract the eggs, to fertilize them with donated sperm and to place them into a uterus not your own. It’s legal to pay a lawyer to draw up a contract between you and the parties with whom you’re making these arrangements, and even to pay a social worker to check on the motivations of those parties. It’s also legal to cover a surrogate’s out-of-pocket expenses directly related to the pregnancy. What’s not legal is to pay someone for those eggs, that sperm or the use of that uterus. It’s also not legal to pay or be paid for helping to arrange for the services of a surrogate mother. Contravening the act can lead to 10 years in jail or a $500,000 fine. (…)

The Canadian law is written in a way that makes clear that payment to surrogates and egg donors is illegal but suggests certain expenses, with receipts, are okay. As it stands, regulations spelling out what constitutes a permissible expense are still unwritten. As a result, there seems to be a great deal of wiggle room for IPs who want to be generous. (…)

Even if everything worked as the law intended, it’s a stretch to suggest that Canadian baby making is non-commercial. It’s a lucrative business for fertility law specialists. Legal fees for a surrogacy agreement drawn up on behalf of the IPs can cost anywhere from $2,500 to $4,000. The surrogate’s representation in the negotiation typically costs just over $1,000. There is another legal fee of $3,000 to $6,000 to apply for a declaration of parentage, which ensures that a baby is the legal child of the IPs and not the surrogate.

The medical side isn’t cheap either. A single round of in vitro fertilization, which involves removing eggs from a woman’s body, mixing them with sperm in a glass dish, then slipping embryos back into a uterus with a catheter, can cost about $7,000, and drug costs can double that. Injecting a single sperm directly into an egg (a process known as ICSI) is an additional $1,500. Testing genetics before placing the embryo in the uterus is several thousand more. Testicular sperm extraction, frozen embryo transfer, assisted hatching—it adds up. All told, a single attempt at pregnancy via IVF can total $20,000. And since there is a less than 25  per cent chance that a child will result, many couples end up trying more than once.

riporto anche una tabella da queste pagine:



Papers about and presentations of Contract Children

21 Febbraio 2016 Posted by webmater

All files:

“Equality in reproduction? Surrogacy and its discontents” presented to the conference Social Class in the 21st century. Intersections between class, gender and sexuality revisited, Amsterdam Universiteit, 22-23.10.2016

“What is a family? Sexual and dependency ties in law and utopia” presented to the conference Non-Monogamies and Contemporary Intimacies, LisbonUniversity, 25-27 september 2016.

Presentation and discussion of Contract Children in Skala Eressos at the Women’s festival, september 2016.


Contract Children. Questioning surrogacy

2 Ottobre 2015 Posted by admin

Il mio ultimo libro, “Contract children. Questioning surrogacy”  (Ibidem, Stoccarda 2015), è disponibile da ottobre nelle librerie che lo ordinano.

La tesi politica del libro – che raccoglie una riflessione sul significato di “famiglia” sotto il patriarcato e oltre, una ricerca sullo statuto giuridico della “surrogazione”, una sintesi di risultati di ricerche etnografiche, e molto altro ancora – si può riassumere in “maternità per altri sì se volontaria e gratuita”.
Sullo stesso argomento su questo sito uno scritto in italiano (La differenza sessuale. Uno scritto a proposito di maternità surrogata) un po’ più antico che argomenta sulla possibilità di contrattualizzare la surrogazione (in molta sintesi anche il testo più recente “La madre dimenticata”), mentre nel libro affronto anche il tema della mercificazione dell’infanzia.
Contract Children
Questioning Surrogacy
Surrogate motherhood is expanding all over the world. Debates
rage over how public policy should consider the signing
away of the parental rights of birth mothers in favor of a
‘commissioning’ couple or an individual.
In this book, Daniela Danna describes the situation in English-speaking
countries and worldwide, from California to Greece,
presenting the legal alternatives regulating (or not) these peculiar
Should surrogacy remain a private agreement? Should it be
treated as an enforceable contract? Are surrogate mothers
workers? What happens inside the countries that have chosen
different ways of handling this new and controversial
matter? And, the most important question of all: How can
we live in this era of new techno-medical possibilities and try
to stay human? Can we resist commodification in the field of
human relations concerning procreation?
Contract Children discusses the different ways available to obtain
a child through surrogate motherhood. It is fundamental
reading for anyone wanting to be involved in the surrogacy
process. It gives prospective surrogate mothers and infertile
couples the background information necessary for their own
informed decision. It is also an essential instrument for policy
makers and activists in the field of women’s rights, social justice,
and children’s rights.
The question of how to publicly deal with surrogate motherhood
touches upon our social vision of motherhood, ultimately
marking the position of women in contemporary society.
ISBN 978-3-8382-0760-5
220 pages, Paperback. € 29,90
Available as Hardcover:
ISBN 978-3-8382-0810-7

Intelligent, compelling and highly readable, Contract Children challenges us to rethink the meanings of motherhood, care and markets before making judgments about the ethics of surrogacy. This is a powerful and original contribution to debates on surrogate motherhood.

Julia O’Connell Davidson, Professor of Sociology, University of Nottingham.

In this book, Daniela Danna proposes thought provocking theses not only on surrogacy, but more generally on gender roles and reproduction in the framework of the contemporary technological and geopolitical lansdscape. Putting an emphaisis on the principal role of birth (surrogate) mothers Danna investigates a number of relevant issues: what is a family in cases of surrogacy? what is the role of fathers – whether they are male or female – what is the best interest of the child?  Is it possible to consider contracts of surrogacy?
Danna pulls the strings of thirty years of reflection on an issue that, from marginal and confined to a few exceptional cases, is spreading across the planet, equally involving its poorest and richest parts. Finally, an intelligent reading on surrogate motherhood, to absorb and utilize in our various fields of action, from the academy in politics, to personal life.

Caterina Botti, docente di Bioetica, Dipartimento di Filosofia Sapienza – Università di Roma


Daniela Danna has given us a truly global look at what is called ‘surrogacy,’ and what she more accurately calls ‘contract children.’  She traces the practice of selling ‘gestational services’ or ‘renting wombs’ from its creation in the United States in the 1970’s to its growth as a global industry, showing us the varied legal and social meanings around the world of turning pregnancy into paid labor – and often very poorly paid labor indeed.  What would it mean to value, as she argues we should value, pregnancy and motherhood as the basic social tie, the relationship within which all human life begins?

Barbara Katz Rothman, City University of New York

Leggere questo libro è come salire sul colmo di una montagna e guardare il paesaggio dall’alto. Tutti i particolari che compongono il difficile dibattito sulla maternità surrogata appaiono chiaramente nelle loro interrelazioni. La ricchezza delle fonti e una raffinata sensibilità sociologica accompagnano e supportano la narrazione. Ideale per chi desidera approcciarsi per la prima volta al tema, sarà per i più esperti l’occasione di sperimentare nuovi punti di vista.

La maternità come oggetto di potere, di stigma o di dipendenza, il ruolo riproduttivo della donna durante il suo ciclo di vita e le implicazioni sul lavoro retribuito, il concetto di famiglia e le sue relazioni con il capitale, il rapporto tra natura, tecnologia ed evoluzione biologica, tra individuo e soggetto sociale, l’importanza del simbolico nella definizione culturale dei modelli, la responsabilità individuale e collettiva sui temi della maternità e della riproduzione sono solo alcuni degli ambiti di riflessione che potranno trovare stimoli innovativi dalla lettura del libro.

Stefania Doglioli, presidente del Centro Studi sul Pensiero Femminile, Torino e dell’Associazione XXD




Presentation of Contract Children in Skala Eressos

3 Settembre 2015 Posted by webmater

12th September at 18
Maria Sereti of the Lesbian Group Lesviki Omada Athina (
introduced me, in the framework of the Women’s Festival 2015


Non-monogamies and contemporary intimacies, conference in Lisbon

3 Settembre 2015 Posted by webmater

Conference website:


My abstract:

What is a family? Sexual and dependency ties in law and utopia

The legal recognition of polyamorous relationships is proposed and debated (e.g. Aviram 2008, Stricherz 2013), opening up the issue of what should a legally recognized family be founded upon. In our present liberal geoculture (Wallerstein 1992) this issue pertains to the relationship between the public and private spheres, but the critical approach promoted by second-wave feminism (“The personal is political”) denounces the separation of a private (female and inferiorized) sphere as an ideological construction serving male power.

Can we do away with separating the private and the public? Need we not a private sphere, at least to protect “deviants” from the enforcement of (private) morality in the public sphere (e.g. by losing one’s job)? What should be public and what should be private in one’s existence? What to do about the social and legal recognition of social, emotional, and caring ties and relationships? Can we just focus on the rights of the (single, monogamous, polyamorous) individual, as for example lesbian activists have proposed in Italy and elsewhere?

According to the family law expert Martha Fineman, sex is private while the relationship between a dependent and a caregiver should be publicly recognized as “family,” collectively helped. “Family” should be epitomized not by the conjugal bond but by a Mother/Child dyad, comprising all other cases of necessary care (Fineman’s proposal has ambiguities: what about an ill person only temporary dependent?). Is her vision doing away with the concept of “private sphere” or is it reinforcing an instrument of the current power hierarchies?

Expo come Macchina (sulla teoria di Alf Hornborg)

7 Agosto 2015 Posted by admin


Testo del paper presentato a Binghamton alla prima conferenza sull’ecologia-mondo

scarica il paper

“Mega-events and the resuscitation of capitalism: the case of Expo 2015 in Milan”, paper presented to the conference World Society, Planetary Natures: Crisis and Sustainability in the Capitalocene and Beyond, Binghamton University, 9-11.7.2015.

Social Class in the 21st Century: convegno a ottobre

6 Maggio 2015 Posted by admin


Amsterdam Centre for Globalisation Studies (ACGS) and Amsterdam Centre for Inequality Studies (AMCIS)
The question of social class has re-emerged as a central concern for the analysis and politics of gender and sexuality in the public sphere in many societies worldwide. The ascent and subsequent crisis of global neoliberalism have been deeply implicated in growing inequalities, which have affected the shape of gender and sexual meanings and relations in fundamental ways. For instance, whereas some women have emerged as highly successful agents in the new global economy, their ascent to wealth and power is almost always contingent upon the labour and ongoing exclusion of other – the working classes, the poor, migrants, and/or women of colour. Similarly, with the introduction of some openly lesbian women and gay men into the cosmopolitan-managerial and so-called ‘creative’ global classes, very particular articulations of LGBTQ identity and culture – mostly middle-class and ‘homonormative’ – have become more visible. At the same time alternative and marginalized expressions of LGBTQ identity have increasingly disappeared from public view. Among other factors, social class has played a key role in these dynamics. While institutional sexism and homophobia have perhaps lessened for social upper classes, the social exclusion of others has increased as the result of growing inequality and precarity. These dynamics call for greater attention to the interconnections between social class, race and ethnicity, and gender and sexuality.

Contemporary global developments exemplify what has long been seen as a central topic of scholarly inquiry: class and other social and cultural divisions have affected lived experiences and have had an impact on people’s abilities and opportunities, as well as on their constructions of gender and sexual identities, categories, and politics. A focus on ‘inclusion’, equal rights and democratic citizenship runs the danger of obscuring growing structural inequalities. Inside and outside of the academy, intersectional and other new forms of critical analysis have gone a long way in accounting for such inequalities, as well as for the divergent social positioning of actors. Nonetheless, these new approaches have not been productive on all levels of social relations and dynamics. Partly as the result of the crisis of Marxism and the theoretical problems associated with overtly reductive class analyses, the effects of class on gender and sexuality remain under-theorized and have suffered from insufficient empirical investigation. The dominance of white, middle-class, homonormative, and cisgender LGBTQ cultures and identities in scholarly debates conceals class differences and the dominance of a particular ontology. A focus on class and its interconnection with race, ethnicity, gender and sexuality enables scholars to take seriously the complexities of contemporary gender and sexual dynamics in a global world. Class analysis not only unveils inequality but brings to light difference, distinction and dissent, both between and within social groups. Such an analysis questions the dominance of particular identities, but does not satisfy itself with explanations attributing alternative experiences to essentialized or depoliticized notions of cultural difference.

A major question that needs to be addressed is the dominance of global Western ontologies in the study of social class. North–south comparisons (as well as comparisons unsettling this binary) will bring fresh insights into the way in which global dynamics have reconfigured relations between classes or the concept of class itself. For instance, class identification in many parts of the world is a matter of how well connected one is transnationally, resulting in specific forms of gender inequality. Transnational migration also reveals class dynamics in configuration with sexuality, from exploitation and labour rights in migrant sex work to examples of successful transgender migration patterns. Neo-liberalisation is often and rightly so critiqued for creating (more) inequalities, but for some groups in the global South it also implies new opportunities. Recent studies on the global middle classes, for instance, have also emphasized the symbolic meaning of class. Eventually, such studies point out the necessity of questioning how the material and cultural dimensions are dialectically intertwined in the generation of gendered class subjectivities and relations. Exploring the class dynamics of gender and sexuality in and from the global South thus brings new understandings.

Four interconnected developments background our call for a focus on class. First, gender and sexuality are often largely absent from class analysis. Second, class since the 1980s has increasingly been abandoned as a theoretical tool in feminist theory, even though Marxism had informed feminist theory and practice until the 1980s. Third, the central role that queer approaches to social and cultural analysis attributes to choice, change, and the destabilization of categories comes at a cost, namely the lack of attention to more enduring power relations and inequalities. Fourth, taking a transnational standpoint will help further theorise the questions of social classes in the 21st century.

The way forward, we suggest, is to start unpacking the concept of class. Interestingly, while most of us recognise immediately the notion of class, definitions of it remain elusive and differ tremendously in their reach and implications. During this conference we intend to explore various routes to unpack the formulation of class through the prism of gender and sexuality. The first question is the matter of scale: from day-to-day interaction, via various levels to the state, and the transnational level: when does class matter? Hence, what makes class matter? What are the material and/or symbolic characteristics of class and how do they matter?  Which social, political or cultural ideas, practices and institutions ‘form’ social class? Last but not least, how can class analysis shed light on gender and sexual relations, and how does gender and sexuality analysis shed light on class? We invite papers from the wide range of social sciences, including social history, to take up these questions and engage in an interdisciplinary debate.

Con Luigi La Fauci modereremo il panel “A class analysis of LGBTQ parenthood”

il mio intervento “Equality in reproduction? Surrogacy and its discontent”


The starting point of my paper are the discourses of homoparental associations, such as the Network of European LGBT Families Associations (NELFA), APGL, Famiglie Arcobaleno that put in parallel the two political requests for access to assisted reproductive techniques and surrogacy: they are meant as the parallel ways for, respectively, lesbian and gay couples to become parents. These political positions rise a number of questions: what is “equality” in reproduction? (NELFA demands “Equal access to surrogate parenthood all across Europe, as it is a worldwide reality”.)

One thing is to ask for equality of established families, but another to constitute a family. The possibilities of women and men are of course different. In this paper I will touch only tangentially the ethical questions regarding the use of bought sperm, and will concentrate on how gay men who do not want to share parenthood with women can become parents. How do the two possibilities of adoption and surrogacy exactly differ from one another? What is surrogacy, precisely? Does it need the law approval? Does it need contracts? And, more generally, is surrogacy a class question, entailing exploitation, or is it based on the gift-giving qualities of “surrogate mothers”?

The questions will be answered by an analysis of how in contemporary society, characterized by patriarchy and capitalism, law and culture define a family, a mother, and what we can characterize as voluntary and free.


For more information on the conference visit:<>

“Population dynamics and world-systems analysis”

22 Agosto 2014 Posted by admin

“Population dynamics and world-systems analysis”, in Journal of World Systems Research, vol .20, n. 2, pp. 207-228


Venezia, 3a Conferenza sulla Decrescita

18 Dicembre 2011 Posted by daniela

Dal 19 al 22 settembre si svolge a Venezia la 3a Conferenza internazionale sulla Decrescita (lingua ufficiale: inglese). L’Associazione XXD, di cui faccio parte, ha organizzato un seminario su Denatalità e decrescita, cui parteciperanno anche presentando delle relazioni Ferdinanda Vigliani con Paola Leonardi e Giuliano Cannata.
Qui il link per scaricare le nostre relazioni e l’introduzione generale, in italiano e in inglese

Relazione introduttiva venezia
Il dibattito sulla denatalità in Italia
The debate about the falling birth rate in Italy