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Of care and commodities: breast milk and the new politics of mobile biosubstances

By Kate Boyer

Abstract

Advances in lactation technology in recent years have changed the ontological status of breast milk, giving it new-found mobility. This paper considers the contested meanings over breast milk’s ‘proper place’ in US and UK society. By synthesizing scholarship from geography, gender studies and science and technology studies, I use the case of mobile breast milk to propose a new framework for how geographers might conceptualize mobile biosubstances. Drawing on the work of Waldby and Mitchell (2006), I suggest that the ways in which breast milk now travels reflect how mobile biosubstances increasingly function as a hybrid form, drawing together elements of both gift-exchanges and commodity-exchanges

Topics: G1
Year: 2009
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.soton.ac.uk:150893
Provided by: e-Prints Soton
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