Thursday, August 2, 2007

"Sperm Counts"

Lisa Jean Moore is Coordinator of Gender Studies and Associate Professor of Sociology and Women's Studies at Purchase College, SUNY.

She applied the "Page 69 Test" to Sperm Counts: Overcome by Man's Most Precious Fluid and reported the following:
I began my sociological investigation into sperm and semen when, as a graduate student, I conducted a study on the promotional literature and donor catalogs of American sperm banks. It was fascinating to me to explore how men were ranked through the consumption of their semen for reproductive purposes. I continued different types of research projects over the past decade that each had some seminal component, for example, conducting in-depth with sex workers and analyzing transcripts from crime shows and visual representations in hardcore pornography. I have also been a board member for The Sperm Bank of California. As a mother or two children conceived through donor insemination, I also interweave my personal experiences of using semen with a more analytic interpretation of men and boys and the rituals of masculinity through science, technology and biomedicine.

P69 is about how children's books create personalities for sperm cells and how this is potentially limiting to a child's understanding of reproduction. It is one of the arguments of the book but not necessarily the best page to adequately sum up the merits of the book. However it might indeed encourage certain readers to pick up the book as it is my vision of what children's books should do in order to be more open about the story of reproduction and less sexist about how we understand the operation of cells.
Read more about Sperm Counts at the New York University Press website.

Visit the complete list of books in the Page 69 Test Series.

--Marshal Zeringue