A Vegan Ecofeminist Exploration of Infertility Treatments
Katy Fulfer (University of Waterloo)

September 30, 2022, 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Department of Philosophy, University of Western Ontario

University College 3220
1151 Richmond Street


Vegans (or, people whose moral and political commitments involve doing as little harm as possible to animals) often experience tension when they engage with medical products that have been developed with or include animal products. However, in scholarship and in vegan circles, I don’t encounter such anxieties expressed around infertility treatments. This project is a first step in exploring how vegan commitments might interact with a feminist analysis of infertility treatments. Vegan ecofeminists, namely Greta Gaard (2010), have made connections between how creatures across species experience injustice in relation to reproduction. Gaard points to how infertility treatments and industrial animal agriculture are both sites of patriarchal coercion and commodification. I seek to build on this approach by considering how infertility treatments, historically and in current practice, are not only similar to but also intertwined with industrial animal agriculture. I will argue that using reproductive technologies will always entail a moral loss from a vegan ecofeminist lens and suggest some strategies to mitigate these tensions. 

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