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Additional info for Anonymous Exchange Relations: Assisted Conception between Ova Donors and Recipients in the United Kingdom

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I would he over the moon. It would be the chance of a lifetime. She us one of a family of Seven and it never dawned on her that she would not he able to have t'e famik she longed for. She married soling, at IS. ind had Figure 2a. established himself in his engineering career. Hut in spite of numerous tests the longed for bah did not arrive. v 42 and ph ysicall y fit. But every month is vital and The needs ii have ire donor eggs as soon as prssihk to hrlp her have her famuis' "A hat't would ' ust complete our lives.

These points are salient as many of the donors I spoke to also showed little or no hesitation over whether or not to donate. , also expressed no regrets or misgivings about their donations. First, however, it is necessary to consider how such claims about protecting persons' welfare and preserving persons as nonidentifiable or unknown identities, are informed by particular sets of assumptions. The first point to raise concerns the way that what may be taken as practices of anonymity represent a certain structuring or ordering of relations which preserve other (already existing) relations (cf: Strathem 1988).

Though the women in this study do not know each other, and though the donations they give and receive do not return to the original donor as in the reciprocity model of exchange, all the women I spoke to nonetheless felt very strongly that the 'valuables' passing between them constituted kinds of 'gifts'. Before considering the value of anonymity as a medium of exchange, it is helpful to 'filter' the construct analytically in terms of the assumptions governing the reciprocity model. Chapter Two 39 Anonymity, gifts and non-returns Since anthropological theory has equated the cancellation of gift-debt with the potential for social imbalance and instability (Sahlins 1965), non-reciprocal gifts have either been rendered intelligible as 'free' or 'pure' exchanges (for example Malinowski 1922), or else as independent of the social flows of dynamic circulation (Howell 1989; Weiner 1976,1992)6.

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