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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

versão impressa ISSN 0102-311Xversão On-line ISSN 1678-4464

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GIFFIN, Karen Mary. Nosso corpo nos pertence: a dialética do biológico e do social. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 1991, vol.7, n.2, pp.190-200. ISSN 1678-4464.  https://doi.org/10.1590/S0102-311X1991000200005.

This article aims at reviewing the discussion of biological and social factors in the analysis of women's social condition. With the appearance of a feminist perspective, the dominance of earlier biologically-based explanations was substituted by an emphasis on the social construction of female identity. Even when women's identification with the body and with nature, and their secondary status, were considered universal, biological determinism was rejected. In this process of re-definition of the object of study, the ideological role of science was pointed out, since male dominance in science and society accompanied the historical tendency which relegated "the woman question" to the sphere of natural fact. Although growing awareness of the socially-constructed nature of scientific activity itself is producing a tendency to abandon the biological/social dichotomy at the conceptual level, differences between men and women in the reproductive sphere continue to exist. It is argued that analysis of reproduction requires characterization of the sexes as biosocial entities in relationship, situated in specific historical contexts, and that in modern society women are subject to a double reproductive contradiction.

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