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Exposing MenThe Science and Politics of Male Reproduction$
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Cynthia R. Daniels

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195148411

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195148411.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use.date: 25 June 2022

Commodifying Men

Commodifying Men

The Science and Politics of Male Infertility and Sperm Banking

(p.72) (p.73) 4 Commodifying Men
Exposing Men

Cynthia R. Daniels

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the third element of reproductive masculinity—the assumption of male virility—through the history and practices of the sperm-banking industry in the United States. It analyzes the social, technological, and economic forces that pushed male infertility into public light at the end of the twentieth century and led to the commodification of sperm. The chapter traces the processes of social deflection that come into play to reinstate ideals of masculinity in the face of the public exposure of male infertility. It also assesses the paradoxical nature of masculine privilege that valorizes sperm as the carrier of ideal human traits but still measures a man by his fertility.

Keywords:   reproductive element, male virility, sperm banking, male infertility, commodification, masculinity

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