Tag Archives: Children

XX by Angela Chadwick

XX Angela ChadwickThe opening paragraph of ‘XX’ by Angela Chadwick is as good as any to sum up the premise of her debut novel published last year: “After years of controversial research, scientists at Portsmouth University’s Centre for Reproductive Medicine have this morning announced plans to create IVF babies from two women. They’re pushing for a change to the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act that will make it legal to fertilise an egg with genetic material from a second female.” Lesbian couple Rosie and Jules are quick to take up the opportunity to have a baby of their own through the means of a groundbreaking clinical trial, but a backlash from right-wing movements inevitably creates problems along the way. Continue reading

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Far From The Tree by Andrew Solomon

Far From the Tree Andrew Solomon Disability Identity Wellcome PrizeWinner of the Wellcome Book Prize in 2014, ‘Far From the Tree: Parents, children and the search for identity’ is Andrew Solomon’s account of “ordinary people making courageous choices”. It is a densely written and detailed study which examines the links between identity and disability and the challenges faced by those perceived to be “different”. Divided into ten main topics, the first six (deaf, dwarfs, Down’s Syndrome, autism, schizophrenia, disability) focus on “horizontal” categories typically classified as illnesses, while the other four (prodigies, rape, crime, transgender) are “vertical” identities which are assumed to be socially constructed. Continue reading

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Dead Babies and Seaside Towns by Alice Jolly

Dead Babies and Seaside Towns by Alice Jolly‘Dead Babies and Seaside Towns’ is Alice Jolly’s memoir about her attempts to have a second child. When her first son Thomas is two years old, Jolly falls pregnant again but a scan reveals that the placenta has become partly detached. Her daughter, Laura, was stillborn in 2005, twenty-four weeks into the pregnancy. After several miscarriages, rounds of IVF treatment and failed attempts to adopt, Jolly had a daughter named Hope born in 2011 to a surrogate mother in Minnesota using a donor egg. Continue reading

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