För barnets bästa? : Om resonemangen bakom Sveriges utförande av ”normaliserande” kirurgier på intersexuella barn och respekten för människovärdet
Sammanfattning: ”Normalizing” surgeries on intersex children with ambiguous genitalia have faced an increasing amount of criticism from human rights bodies during the last decade. Despite this fact, most European nations still allow medically unnecessary procedures that aim to ”normalize” intersex children’s bodies. Sweden is one of many countries that continues to preform ”normalizing” surgeries on small minors. The first purpose of this thesis is to comprehend why this happens to be the case. To accomplish this, I have identified political reasonings in Swedish politics and ethical reasonings in Swedish medical literature that explains Sweden’s stance on the subject. The second purpose of the thesis is to analyze whether these reasonings undermine or strengthen the human dignity of intersex children. The study has shown that there are several reasons as to why ”normalizing” surgeries continue to be allowed in Sweden. Regarding the political reasonings it has become clear that the surgeries tend to be ignored within Swedish politics since they are viewed as a medical issue. The reluctance to address the topic contributes to Sweden’s unwillingness to ban the practice, along with the political tendency to downplay or ignore the human rights violations that the surgeries entail. The ethical reasonings that Swedish medicine has used to justify the surgeries have been shown to rely on the claim that ”normalizing” surgeries can be necessary to advocate for the best interest of the child. This position is partially based on the presumption that children with normative bodies are more likely to be accepted by their parents and society at large. Even though the reasonings behind Sweden’s continued performance of the surgeries seem to have the children’s best interest at heart, I spend the thesis arguing that they nonetheless undermine the human dignity of intersex children. The medical community’s claim that the surgeries are performed in the best interest of the child immediately become problematic when it becomes clear that some intersex individuals have experienced the surgeries as a form of mutilation. With the help of Butler and Hedenius I further argue that it is contrary to the human dignity of intersex children to subject them to unnecessary surgeries with the aim of increasing the environments acceptance of the child. I also point out several ethical problems regarding the political tendency to downplay the critique directed towards ”normalizing” medical procedures.
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