School of Social and Political Science

Tara Pollak

Job Title

PhD Student

Niki Vermeulen photo

Research interests

Research interests

Social Anthropology, Medical Anthropology, Reproductive Health, Anthropology of Reproduction, Kinship, Birth and Death, Bereavement, Material Culture, Scotland, Breastfeeding, Anthropology of Ireland, Care


PhD Title

Reproducing Loss: An Investigation into Pregnant Bodies and Bereavement in the Lothians, Scotland.

Whilst as many as one in four pregnancies end in miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy or stillbirth, provisions for those affected are few with services offered mostly by charities. Reproducing Loss is a 12-month ethnographic research project tracing the medical and social intersections of pregnancy loss in the Lothians, Scotland. I aim to look at pregnancy loss through its remains and disruptions: What kinds of bodies does it produce? What kinds of families? How do persons affected by pregnancy loss understand pregnancy, birth and death? What kinds of provisions for care are available and how do they relate to the medical and legal history of the Lothians?

In the context of Covid-19 and as a methodological response to service settings moving online, this project uses interviews, digital ethnography, material and spatial methods and archival research to investigate what it means to have a pregnancy loss in the Lothians today. 

Works within