Hübel Surrogacy and its Bioethics


Surrogacy and its Bioethics: Feminist & Theological Reflections

Speaker: Dr Sylvia Hübel

Member of the Dept. of Theological Ethics and the Interfaculty Centre for Biomedical Ethics and Law, University of Leuven, Belgium.

Time and Date: 18.00hrs, Thursday the 10th of September 2015.

Note: this event will now include brief talks by two women who have acted as surrogates.

Venue: Workshop Four, The Crescent Arts Centre, 2-4 University Road, Belfast.



The seminar is free but registration is encouraged, please email us at: contact@nief.org.uk


Seminar Flyer [.pdf]


Surrogacy is a controversial form of medically assisted reproduction that challenges our basic ideas about motherhood and the bond between a mother and her child. Whilst the ethics of surrogate motherhood have been widely discussed women’s voice and their lived experience have, nevertheless, been largely ignored. Beginning with a discussion of surrogacy and the various ways in which it has been implemented we will review the ethical issues around surrogacy from a feminist perspective, and consider the value of women’s first-person narratives. I argue for the transformative potential of feminist analysis on the Biblical tradition. Furthermore, I contend that women’s lived experience should not only inform clinical practice but the attendant psycho-social and pastoral support systems. Feminist approaches to bioethics and theology introduce new layers of understanding that can help us to evaluate the ethical impact of reproductive technologies on women’s lives in its fullest possible sense.


Dr Sylvia Hübel is a member of the Interfaculty Centre for Biomedical Ethics and Law, University of Leuven, Belgium, and recently completed her Ph.D (Title: Women’s Lived Experiences of Reproductive Technologies: A Feminist Bioethical Approach). Whilst in Belfast Dr Hübel will also be presenting at a conference ‘ePatients: the medical, ethical and legal repercussions of blogging and micro-blogging experiences of illness and disease’ taking place at QUB. See: https://epatientsconference.wordpress.com/