Institute of Geography


Dr. Yolinliztli Pérez-Hernández


Sozial- und Kulturgeographie

Postal Address
University of Bern
Institute of Geography
Social and Cultural Geography
Hallerstrasse 12
CH-3012 Bern
Consultation Hour
upon request

I hold a Master's degree in political and social sciences from the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) and a Ph.D. in social anthropology and ethnology from the École des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHESS) in partnership with the Institut national d'études démographiques (INED) (France). My doctoral thesis is entitled "Medicalizing uncertainty. An Ethno-sociological study on egg freezing in France". It focused on social, medical, legal, bodily, technical, and kinship relations that shape egg freezing in the French context, particularly focusing on the link between egg freezing and motherhood. From January 2022, I work on the project "Reproductive geopolitics: Governing and Contesting In/Fertility in the Global Intimate" and conduct research on indigenous women’s access to reproductive health in Mexico.

My research interests include medical anthropology and medical sociology, anthropology of reproduction, gender and feminist theory, feminist science and technology studies (STS), and feminist technoscience. In the past, I have also studied sexual consent, sexual violence, and feminicide. I specialize in ethnographic methodologies (i.e., in-depth interviews, direct observation), conduction of field research in Western societies, and fieldwork in medical settings. I am currently learning affectual methodologies. My regional focus is France, Spain, Belgium, and Latin America.


Fields of research

  • medical anthropology and medical sociology
  • Anthropology of reproduction
  • gender and feminist theory
  • feminist science and technology studies (STS)
  • feminist technoscience


01/2020 - 06/2020

Visiting Scholar at Reproductive Sociology Research Group (ReproSoc), University of Cambridge, under the subversion of Sarah Franklin

2016 - 2021 Ph.D. in Social Anthropology and Ethnology at École des hautes études en sciences sociales (EHESS) and Institut national d’études démographiques (INED), France, under the supervision of Virginie Rozée (INED)
2013 - 2015 M.A. in Social and Political Sciences at Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM), Mexico, under the supervisión of Roberto Castro (CRIM-UNAM)
2008 - 2012 B.A. in Social Anthropology at Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Morelos (UAEM), Mexico






Pérez Hernández, Y. (2021). Autoconservation ovocytaire dite « sociale » en France : Imaginer le chaos. In D. Bonnet, F. Cahen, & V. Rozée (Éds.), Procréation et imaginaires collectifs. Fictions, mythes et représentations de la PMA (p. 137‑147). INED.

Pérez-Hernández, Y. (2021). Toutes les femmes qui congèlent leurs ovocytes ne veulent pas forcément d’enfant. The Conversation.


Pérez, Y., & Rozée, V. (2019). L’autoconservation ovocytaire en France : Analyse d’une pratique biomédicale controversée. ¿ Interrogations ? Revue pluridisciplinaire de sciences humaines et sociales.


Pérez Hernández, Y. (2018). Gestación subrogada : Una revisión etnográfica para contribuir al debate en México. Debate Feminista, 56, 85‑109.

Medicalising uncertainty. An Ethno-sociological Research on Egg Freezing in France

Duration 2016-2021

Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACyT, Mexico) and Agence de la Biomédicine (ABM, France)


This dissertation studies France's complex social, medical, legal, bodily, technical, and kinship relations that shape egg freezing (oocyte vitrification for autologous purposes). The study focuses both on the normative dimension that structures access to this biomedical technology and on the practices and experiences of those directly involved (the women having theirs eggs frozen, as well as the practitioners and laboratory technicians who make it medically and technically possible), and on the technical dimension of oocyte freezing. Drawing on 20-month fieldwork (2018 - 2019), this research presents an Ethno-sociological study combining semi-structured interviews and ethnographic research. Direct observation took place in three French centers for assisted reproductive techniques (centres d’assistance médicale à la procréation-Centre d’Étude et de Conservation des Œufs et du sperme, AMP-CECOS) and, in particular, in their in vitro fertilization (IVF) laboratories. On the one hand, this work proposes deconstructing the three legal-medico categories of access to oocyte freezing in France: medical egg freezing or “fertility preservation,” egg-sharing (ESH), and so-called social egg freezing (SEF). On the other hand, it questions the link between oocyte vitrification, procreation, and motherhood. Contrary to what one might think, my study suggests that egg freezing is not necessarily a biotechnology for procreation. My analysis allows me to argue that egg freezing is a kind of medicalization of uncertainty from an institutional, subjective, and technical point of view.



June “Depuis plusieurs années, c’est plutôt clair que je n’ai pas envie d’avoir d’enfant’. Autoconservation ovocytaire et (non-)maternité(s) dans le contexte français”, Symposium, Ined, Paris. Available online at:
September “Institutional categories on autologous oocyte vitrification in France through women’s experiences,” Annual Meeting. Society for Social Studies of Science (SSSS), New Orleans, on 5th September.
August “L’autoconservation ovocytaire pour différer la maternité : une technologie pour l’émancipation des femmes ?” 2nd International Congress of the Gender Institute, Angers, France.

Lecture. “Autoconservación de óvulos para diferir la maternidad. ¿Un nuevo combate feminista?”, Mexico City. Available online at:

October  “Autoconservation ovocytaire (AO) en contexte d’endométriose en France. Entre résistance (quasi)héroïque et célibat”, Workshop Endométriose et inégalités. Expériences, expertises et poblème public, MSH Paris Nord, Paris, France
June “Les représentations de la maternité en France à travers les discours institutionnels autour de l’autoconservation ovocytaire”, Symposium Assisted reproductive technology and social imaginaries, Ined, Paris.
2022 (ongoing)  
September “Gestación subrogada en América Latina: Reflexiones feministas sobre una práctica compleja”, International Conference, El Colegio de México
December “Quand le Sud pense le Nord: défis méthodologiques et enjeux épistémologiques”, International Workshop, EHESS/Ined, Paris [Hybrid format].
November “Etnografiar la transformación: rituales afectivos, matrimoniales, sexuales y reproductivos en América latina”, Roundtable, Latino-American Association of Anthropology (ALA), Montevideo, Uruguay [Online].
June “Reflections on Research Experiences among “unmarked groups”: ethnographies of inverted fieldworks”, Roundtable, 8th Ethnography and Qualitative Research Conference, Italy [online].