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This chapter considers how a liminal lens help inform contemporary discussions surrounding embryos in vitro and beyond using three case studies: 1) the 14-day rule, 2) in vitro gametogenesis, and 3) ectogenesis. The first case study is important as it is the principal manifestation of law’s attempt to reflect ‘special status’ on the embryo, and because it is also an example of legal attempts to deal with embryonic processes. This example is used to examine what the context-based approach developed in this book could bring to contemporary debate about the nature of such a rule, as well as its retention, reduction, or extinction. The second example enables us to consider what the analysis offered in this book says about these relatively new technologies in relation to their regulation, and the key biological and legal thresholds involved. The final case study focuses specifically on partial ectogenesis, a technology which not only introduces new thresholds, but leads us to question our existing understanding of meaningful legal thresholds, most notably birth as the moment in which the foetus/baby attains personhood. By these means, the analysis engages with the entire trajectory of embryonic development as this is driven by scientific possibilities, both current and near future.
This chapter chronologically traces past legal engagement with the human embryo, from the 13th century, to the end of the 20th century. It does so with a view to demonstrating that a historical perspective is required to understand that process is a key facet of law-making in this area. Notable from this legal history is the law’s persistent efforts to engage with the embryo’s uncertain, processual nature. We cannot fully understand our present legal position without understanding the social, moral, and legal context from which it was born. By looking at the past ‘legal embryo,’ we can see how the law has reached today’s ‘legal embryo’.
Jean Golding, born in England in 1939, is one of the United Kingdom’s National Health Service ‘Research Legends’. Trained in Human Genetics and Biometry, she is best known for having planned and directed the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC), initiated with 14,500 pregnant women in the south of England. The aim was to determine the ways in which different aspects of the environment and genetics are associated with child health and development, including criminality. In a comparison with Brazilian children, conduct problems, hyperactivity, and violent crime were found to be more prevalent in Brazil, but the ALSPAC children had more nonviolent crimes. The associations between behavior problems during childhood and criminality were partly explained by perinatal health factors and childhood family environments in both countries.
Review of growth and development process before and after birth. Definition of tissue types, hyperplasia, and hypertrophy. Brain and language development, theory of mind, weaning, motor development, and dental development are covered. The human stages of infant, child, juvenile, adolescent, and adult are defined. Human senescence is described.
This paper contextualises and interprets a text seldom addressed in Anglophone scholarship: De die natali (‘On the birthday’), written by Censorinus to celebrate his patron Caerellius’ birthday in 238 c.e. By exploring both gestation (natalis) and time measurement (dies), the work seeks to elucidate and isolate Caerellius’ birthday in time; it is the ultimate guide to his dies natalis. Despite a seemingly narrow focus, De die natali is best understood as part of a broad ‘spectrum’ of encyclopaedic texts, exemplifying the ‘totalising’ impetus of knowledge ordering in the Roman Empire, while simultaneously exposing the limits of such efforts. An interlocking set of tensions underlie the text, which resonate with other encyclopaedic projects — tensions between unity and plurality, centre and periphery, and the relationship between nature and culture. De die natali is both a product of, and commentary on, the conditions of human knowledge and the Empire's cultural diversity in the early third century.
This critical biography of Jeanne establishes a framework for the thematic analyses of subsequent chapters. It outlines Jeanne’s family background, marriage, and motherhood, before detailing the paternal and maternal inheritance which was the basis of her eventual power. It argues that Jeanne’s succession seemed more secure in the lead-up to 1341 than has generally been assumed in light of the war’s outcome. For the period of the war itself, it turns away from the standard military-oriented account to highlight the turning points that most influenced Jeanne’s governance and role. It also examines the neglected final twenty years of Jeanne’s life, including her financial difficulties and her position during the 1379 rebellion, as an important comparison with her official tenure as duchess.
Lorenzo de’ Medici’s marriage to Clarice Orsini in June 1469 had created a precedent, for it was the first time that the Florentine mercantile and banking family had married out of Tuscany and into a family of long-established Roman aristocrats. The Milanese ambassador predicted at the time that it would give ‘the populace, as well as some of the leading citizens, plenty to talk about’, and so, too, did the lengthy wedding ceremonies.1 Only six months later, Lorenzo’s father Piero died, plunging the twenty-year-old Lorenzo into a political crisis, as he ‘hoisted his sails’ to secure his primacy in Florence, and all too soon – before the end of his first decade in power – he was at war with the pope and the king of Naples following his brother’s murder in 1478.2
When the deprivation of liberty constitutes a violation of the international law for reasons of discrimination based on birth, national, ethnic or social origin, language, religion, economic condition, political or other opinion, gender, sexual orientation, disability or other status, that aims towards or can result in ignoring the equality of human rights.1
This chapter examines birth customs and bodily experiences and practices as an important but rarely considered dimension of private life under Nazism, setting them in the context of the complex racial and ethnic hierarchies created by Nazi occupation policy in Poland. It outlines the power relations and practices associated with women giving birth in the Nazi-annexed Polish territory of the ‘Reichsgau Wartheland’, and focuses in particular on the relationship between ethnic German (Volksdeutsche) women giving birth and the German and Polish midwives they sought out to assist them. Efforts by Reich German midwives to control events in the birth room sometimes faced fierce opposition on the part of the women giving birth, who asserted their right to privacy and to choose persons they trusted to be present at the birth. While the Nazi regime sought to exclude Polish midwives from attending German women giving birth, the supply of German midwives was inadequate. Polish midwives therefore continued to practise, though their precarious status made them vulnerable to harassment by the occupation authorities and accusations by Volksdeutsche of malpractice.
This chapter examines the home leave granted to soldiers during the Second World War as a fundamental dimension of private life for millions of Germans in wartime. It explores the topic from a number of different perspectives. It outlines the regime’s policies and propaganda regarding home leave as a privilege, focusing on the regime’s goals and its conflicting impulses both to control the time men spent away from their military duties and to allow some degree of undisturbed privacy. The chapter then examines personal letters between home and front in order to explore the expectations and experiences relating to home leave on the part of the men on leave and their wives or girlfriends and families. Finally, it uses cases from military and civil courts to show instances of marital conflict and domestic violence associated with home leave.
Prenatal sex steroid exposure plays an important role in determining child development. Yet, measurement of prenatal hormonal exposure has been limited by the paucity of newborn/infant data and the invasiveness of fetal hormonal sampling. Here we provide descriptive data from the MIREC-ID study (n=173 girls; 162 boys) on a range of minimally invasive physical indices thought to reflect prenatal exposure to androgens [anogenital distances (AGDs); penile length/width, scrotal/vulvar pigmentation], to estrogens [vaginal maturation index (VMI) – the degree of maturation of vaginal wall cells] or to both androgens/estrogens [2nd-to-4th digit ratio (2D:4D); areolar pigmentation, triceps/sub-scapular skinfold thickness, arm circumference]. VMI was found to be associated with triceps skinfold thickness (β=0.265, P=0.005), suggesting that this marker may be sensitive to estrogen levels produced by adipose tissue in girls. Both estrogenic and androgenic markers (VMI: β=0.338, P=0.031; 2D:4D – right: β=−0.207, P=0.040; left: β=−0.276, P=0.006; AGD-fourchette − β=0.253, P=0.036) were associated with areolar pigmentation in girls, supporting a role for the latter as an index of both androgen and estrogen exposure. We also found AGD-penis (distance from the anus to the penis) to be associated with scrotal pigmentation (β=0.290, P=0.048), as well as right arm circumference (β=0.462, P<0.0001), supporting the notion that these indices may be used together as markers of androgen exposure in boys. In sum, these findings support the use of several physical indices at birth to convey a more comprehensive picture of prenatal exposure to sex hormones.
To assess whether diet quality before or during pregnancy predicts adverse pregnancy and birth outcomes in a sample of Australian women.
The Dietary Questionnaire for Epidemiological Studies was used to calculate diet quality using the Australian Recommended Food Score (ARFS) methodology modified for pregnancy.
A population-based cohort participating in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health (ALSWH).
A national sample of Australian women, aged 20–25 and 31–36 years, who were classified as preconception or pregnant when completing Survey 3 or Survey 5 of the ALSWH, respectively. The 1907 women with biologically plausible energy intake estimates were included in regression analyses of associations between preconception and pregnancy ARFS and subsequent pregnancy outcomes.
Preconception and pregnancy groups were combined as no significant differences were detected for total and component ARFS. Women with gestational hypertension, compared with those without, had lower scores for total ARFS, vegetable, fruit, grain and nuts/bean/soya components. Women with gestational diabetes had a higher score for the vegetable component only, and women who had a low-birth-weight infant had lower scores for total ARFS and the grain component, compared with those who did not report these outcomes. Women with the highest ARFS had the lowest odds of developing gestational hypertension (OR=0·4; 95 % CI 0·2, 0·7) or delivering a child of low birth weight (OR=0·4; 95 % CI 0·2, 0·9), which remained significant for gestational hypertension after adjustment for potential confounders.
A high-quality diet before and during pregnancy may reduce the risk of gestational hypertension for the mother.
There is evidence that 3.17% of women report post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after childbirth. This meta-analysis synthesizes research on vulnerability and risk factors for birth-related PTSD and refines a diathesis–stress model of its aetiology. Systematic searches were carried out on PsycINFO, PubMed, Scopus and Web of Science using PTSD terms crossed with childbirth terms. Studies were included if they reported primary research that examined factors associated with birth-related PTSD measured at least 1 month after birth. In all, 50 studies (n = 21 429) from 15 countries fulfilled inclusion criteria. Pre-birth vulnerability factors most strongly associated with PTSD were depression in pregnancy (r = 0.51), fear of childbirth (r = 0.41), poor health or complications in pregnancy (r = 0.38), and a history of PTSD (r = 0.39) and counselling for pregnancy or birth (r = 0.32). Risk factors in birth most strongly associated with PTSD were negative subjective birth experiences (r = 0.59), having an operative birth (assisted vaginal or caesarean, r = 0.48), lack of support (r = −0.38) and dissociation (r = 0.32). After birth, PTSD was associated with poor coping and stress (r = 0.30), and was highly co-morbid with depression (r = 0.60). Moderator analyses showed that the effect of poor health or complications in pregnancy was more apparent in high-risk samples. The results of this meta-analysis are used to update a diathesis–stress model of the aetiology of postpartum PTSD and can be used to inform screening, prevention and intervention in maternity care.