Reproductive Justice, Childlessness and Disability. Perspectives of Women with Disabilties Living in Poland

Tuesday, 17 July 2018: 16:30
Oral Presentation
Agnieszka KROL, Jagiellonian University, Poland
The presentation will discuss how women with disabilities navigate reproductive autonomy within social, cultural and legal context that constructs norms on parenthood and childlessness. I will present results of empirical research based on qualitative methods (IDIs). The interviews were conducted both with childless/childfree women and mothers women with physical and sensory disabilities creating diverse family forms. The research aimed at analyzing the emic perspective of women in order to understand negotiations related to the construction of gender, disability, adulthood and care work as well as embodiment and heredity. The study is based on the social and phenomenological models of disability. This hybrid model depicts disability as a multidimensional phenomenon combining both social factors and embodiment theory. Understanding the dynamics of childlessness/childfreeness of women with disabilities is especially important as the group historically was often deprived of reproductive autonomy and in case of Poland still faces restriction of rights. The presentation is based on the research project Disability, motherhood, care. Reproductive autonomy and experiences of motherhood of women with disabilities in Poland funded by National Science Center, Poland (2015/19/N/HS6/00789).