»Mummy, do babies really come from the freezer?«
In October 2014, the corporations Apple and Facebook announced that they would pay for their employees to freeze their egg cells. The freezing of egg cells for non-medical reasons is called social egg freezing. I was interested in this announcement because I can’t imagine delaying the desire of having children just to climb the career ladder. Around the same time, our class began a book design with the subject confrontation. Social egg freezing is the result of the confrontation between children and career; between family and profession. This confrontation is very violent because both things happen at the same stage in life. When it’s time to make career and to climb the social ladder, a woman reaches her maximum of fertility and has the best chance of giving birth to healthy children.
When it comes to social egg freezing, there is no longer a contest. The baby will be delayed and literally put on ice. However, many people forget that egg freezing doesn’t guarantee that you will have children at a later age. There is a big chance of remaining childless. The coverage on this topic by the media is also interesting. Getting children and starting a family are very private subjects; subjects that shouldn’t be discussed with the employer or in public. The sensitive decision to start a family is confronted with rationality and economic efficiency.
I was therefore interested in addressing this issue with the same rationality and scientific approach. Working with the subject social egg freezing has shown me that you can not only look at freezing egg cells. There is so much more, including test-tube fertilisation and other medical possibilities. I tried to make my book down-to-earth and simply inform the reader about social egg freezing. They should make up their mind on their own. I am confronting the reader in the same objective way as the companies are confronting their employees. To present the different paths of life and the many possibilities within it, I have chosen the symbol of a map, like the maps of the metro and bus lines. The font I used is also used for the maps and time schedules of the London Underground.
Braunschweig University of Art, February 2015