Looking Like a Family: Negotiating Bio-Genetic Continuity in British Lesbian Families Using Licensed Donor Insemination

Sexualities 2005 Vol. 8(2): 221-237

26 Pages Posted: 4 Jan 2014

See all articles by Caroline Jones

Caroline Jones

University of Southampton - School of Law

Date Written: June 30, 2005

Abstract

Under current legal regulations, when undertaking donor insemination at British clinics, women are able to ‘choose’ particular characteristics of donors. It is also permissible to reserve sperm from a particular donor for future use. These provisions have traditionally been associated with facilitating heterosexual couples to ‘pass’ as ‘the family’. In contrast, this article discusses the significance of these practices for some lesbian couples. I explore the construction of implied (racial) bio-genetic links between donor-conceived children and co-mothers, and to co-mothers’ extended families. I also examine the use of the same donor for ‘full’ siblings. In conclusion I discuss some of the implications for our understanding of lesbian family construction.

Keywords: families, lesbian, bio-genetic, kinship, donor insemination

Suggested Citation

Jones, Caroline, Looking Like a Family: Negotiating Bio-Genetic Continuity in British Lesbian Families Using Licensed Donor Insemination (June 30, 2005). Sexualities 2005 Vol. 8(2): 221-237. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2373203

Caroline Jones (Contact Author)

University of Southampton - School of Law ( email )

Southampton SO17 1BJ
United Kingdom

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