The Jurisprudence of Pregnancy
Concepts of Conflict, Persons and Property
By Mary Neal
Routledge – 2012 – 220 pages
This book takes a critical conceptual approach to the jurisprudence of pregnancy, examining how the three concepts of conflict, personhood and property are key to the legal analysis and decision-making surrounding pregnancy.
The book begins by questioning the ‘conflict model’ which is often assumed to capture the essence of legal debates on maternal/foetal issues, and goes on to critically examine the concept of personhood in maternal/foetal debates, focusing in particular on human dignity and vulnerability. Finally, the discussion turns to examine the concept of property. Neal takes pregnancy as the inspiration for a reimagining of ‘property’ as paradigmatically intersubjective, arguing that property should be theorized in a way that foregrounds its essentially inclusive nature, and understands more traditional ideas of exclusion and control as effects of property, rather than as its defining characteristics.
This book will be of great interest to academics and students of medical law, family and child welfare law, and jurisprudence.
Part 1: Conflict 1. Where is the Conflict? 2. Why is Conflict of Interest? Part 2: Personhood 3. Personhood in the Maternal/Foetal Context 4. Personhood as Metaphysical Harm Part 3: Property 5. Could Embryos and Foetuses be Objects of Property? 6. ShouldEmbryos and Foetuses be Objects of Property? 7. Conclusion
Mary Ford is a Lecturer in Law at the University of Strathclyde, UK.