Can we see the baby bump please?

2012/ HD/ 49 mins

Routine Skype conversations with the parents of the child growing in her womb does not make the surrogate’s condition less alienating. This often exploitative and stigmatised labour of the marginalised woman is the keystone of the rapidly expanding fertility industry.

The global reach of medical tourism and commercial surrogacy spawns a range of clinics and practices across big cities and small towns in India.Anonymous, often with limited choice, woman’s labour is yet again pushed into the background. A whiff of immorality, the absence of regulation and the erasure of the surrogate’s experience collude to produce a climate of callousness. May we see the baby bump please? meets with surrogates, doctors, law firms,agents, and family in an attempt to understand the context of surrogacy in India.

Director’s note:

I hoped that the core of my film would be the women who opted to be surrogate mothers in the booming fertility industry which catered to both international and national clients. I found easy access to the women only within the four walls of the fertility clinics. Clinics requested that the women remain anonymous.

We shot the women as shadows in the clinic. And found that the bulk of the material was articulate, informative interviews with the doctors and clinic personnel. We kept these interviews aside and worked on creating a presence of the women through the NG part of shots, the part meant to be discarded. We dislocated sound, repeated it. We broke down images. My film needed to create a presence. Although incomplete, often ambiguous, the film stays with this rather than etch out and define those who represent the industry.

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7 responses to “Can we see the baby bump please?

  1. Is there anyway this is connected with human trafficking? These women
    seem to get paid (what wage) is this happening to women not actually wanting
    to do this by choice.
    Sandy

    • Sandy, Its not as if the women are forcibly drawn into this. But yes women do ‘volunteer’ to be a surrogate because of severe financial constraints at home. The wages paid are fairly average but the problem is not the the payment of a low wage, or non payment of wages- the problem is that the woman signs up for a period of nine months where she has no control over her body. What she eats, what she does, how many tests are done, medication, etcetc She leaves with a fees paid to her, no medical insurance, no one is tracking what impact this has on her body.

  2. Hello,
    What an amazing film. Would you be interested in having it broadcast on our UK Sky TV channel?
    Many thanks,
    Zoe

  3. hello agin,
    If you are interested in broadcast, please let me know how I can contaxt you by email.
    Many thanks,
    Zoe

  4. Pingback: High-Tech Babies and the IVF Merry-Go-Round | Aleteia

  5. Pingback: High-Tech Babies and the IVF Merry-Go-Round | Aleteia Staging

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