Medicalization

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As medical technology increasingly advances, we see the realm of bodies become medicalized in turn, especially in the United States. The process of “medicalization” refers to the process in which normal human conditions become viewed through a medical lens, transforming into a problem that must be categorized, studied, diagnosed, and then treated and taken preventative measures against. That what was previously considered to be banal and trivial take a new measure as the body is analyzed and transformed into a political, social, and medical platform. Those who reject certain medical practices and do not fit the rigid mold in regards to “normal” gender and sexuality are suddenly making a statement, those who refuse to give birth in the hands …show more content…
The dominance of sonograms and increase in technological advances coaxes people to view pregnancies as almost separate beings from mothers. Focus on the progenitor, or mother, is decreased and more concern becomes shown over the fetus. In Barbara K. Rothman’s “Laboring Now: Current Cultural Constructions of Pregnancy, Birth, and Mothering”, the writer demonstrates this strange shift to dual personhood—of the mother and the fetus. “Women are asked to take a moment of profound psychological separation and differentiation, when they first see inside themselves to the being that is growing within, and make of that a moment of attachment, a “bonding” experience…an abstraction becomes a baby” (49). Whereas previously, pregnancy was more associated with the mother’s health and what can be done to ensure comfort and health, the fetus develops personhood and seemingly takes over all concern. “In the medical model, prenatal care is the management of pregnancy, like the medical management of any (other) disease” (51). Women and pregnant persons are encouraged to eat certain foods, take vitamins, are prescribed magical medicine that seemingly will solve all problems, and given an exercise regimen to further ensure the success and health of the baby. And when the fetus is considered abnormal or showing improper growth or health—women are encouraged to abort them. There is a certain type …show more content…
Women and those who have female reproductive organs are seemingly constantly shuffled back and forth by practitioners, practices, and often limit the control they have over their reproductive organs. Not even mentioning the amount of trouble that these people have to face when attempting to get an abortion, a mastectomy, or tubal ligation—medicalization often enforces certain political platforms and is used as social control over people’s bodies. While it is considered relatively simple and easy to get approval for cosmetic surgery such as breast augmentation for cissexual women—attempts to remove the breasts and uterus often creates fervent protests about “waste of healthy tissue” and “what if you change your mind later?”. Attempts to go on hormone therapy for transgender people are often met with a bevy of questions and surveys to ensure whether or not they are “truly ailing”. The medical term “transsexualism” is stated to be a problem in which the sexual identity of the mind does not match with the physical body. The medicalization of transgender identity further complicates the relationship between “clinical” and medical views with societal value. In Eric Plemons’ “Envisioning the Body in Relation: Finding Sex, Changing Sex” highlights this, “The desire to radically remove breast tissue completely…in order to approximate male sexual characteristics is

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