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Publication Date


Document Type

Honors Project




Surrogate motherhood-Moral and ethical aspects, Surrogate motherhood-India, Surrogate motherhood-Economic aspects, Feminism, Philosophy, Bioethics, Surrogacy, India, Sociology, Ethics


Commercial surrogacy is a biomedical practice that remains controversial among feminist philosophers. Feminist philosophers disagree about whether commercial surrogacy is morally and legally permissible. This paper explicates two of the most influential philosophical works in the literature today—the arguments against and for commercial surrogacy by Elizabeth Anderson and Richard Arneson. This paper uses ethnographic interviews of Indian surrogates by the pioneering sociologist Amrita Pande to argue that Richard Arneson is right: commercial surrogacy should be morally and legally permissible, and the practice is compatible with commitments to feminism and human well-being.




63 pages. Honors project, Smith College, 2016. Includes bibliographical references (page 63)