PDF icon Conceiving Wholeness: Women, Motherhood, and Ovarian Transplantation, 1902-2004

Rodriguez S, Campo-Engelstein L. Conceiving Wholeness: Women, Motherhood, and Ovarian Transplantation, 1902-2004. Perspect Biol Med. 2011;54(3):409-16. PMID: 21857130

 

Abstract 

 

Scholars have shown that organ transplantation may transform ideas about one's body, with recipients feeling that they are receiving not just a body part but also a part of the donor's identity. This article focuses on a different way in which organ transplantation shapes recipient identity: the idea of becoming whole. We present the case studies of two women separated by a century (one in 1902 and the other in 2004) who sought ovarian transplantation, and examine how ovarian transplantation can engender a sense of wholeness on the individual, the familial, and the cultural levels, due to its ability to enable a recipient to naturally conceive and experience pregnancy.