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The Politics of the Child's Right to Identity in a Disability-Free Society

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The essay examines the legal and moral implications of pre-natal genetic selection of disability in the context of children. I build on scholarly literature on the politics of identity and of culture to explore whether scientific developments prompt a child's "right to a sound mind and body." I consider this question in light of international human rights standards, including the recent European Conventions on Human Rights and Biomedicine, and particularly, the child's right to identity. I propose a new dual model to evaluate such biomedical decisions from a child-centred approach. What is the interplay between the parental right to reproductive freedom and the rights of the child? Where are the children themselves configured in these developments? How can such biomedical decisions be translated into the child's voice? And to what extent do such scientific techniques correspond to the recognition of children under the International Convention on the Rights of the Child as social agents in their own right?

Affiliations: 1: Center for Global Affairs, New York University


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