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  • Published: Boston : New Harvest, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2012.
  • Year Published: 2012
  • Description: xx, 178 p. ; 22 cm.
  • Language: English
  • Format: Book

ISBN/Standard Number

  • 9780547892610
  • 0547892616

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Why have kids? : a new mom explores the truth about parenting and happiness

by Valenti, Jessica.

There are currently 4 available

Where To Find It

Call number: 306.874 Va

Available Copies: Downtown 2nd Floor, Malletts Adult, Pittsfield Adult, West Adult

Additional Details

Children make you happy -- Women are the natural parent -- Breast is best -- Children need their parents -- "The hardest job in the world" -- Mother knows best -- Giving up on parenthood -- Bad mothers go to jail -- Smart women don't have kids -- Death of the nuclear family -- Women should work -- Why have kids?

A high-profile feminist, and a mother herself, explores the question of whether or not to have children, and how having children changes the life of parents, often not for the better, in the modern world.

Community Reviews

Gendered Mirage

Jessica Valenti puts together a powerful picture about how gender, and the well made lies about the joys of kids, causes stress and sometimes disappointment.

The whole book shows how the whole idea of kids being a life changing experience for a couple can be more responsibility than good. She touches on such topics as being the perfect parent, reproductive and birthing rights, depression from distribution of gender and responsibilities, along with the hidden perspectives of parenting that are never discussed by society as they pressure women into becoming reproductive vessels for men.

My only complaint is that a majority of the book focuses on the perspective of majority monogamous heterosexual mothers. They have a small tint of talk about the LGBTQA community in the book, but nothing about homes with two fathers and those of non monogamous couples. Furthermore, while I will admit, even as a male myself, that men are a majority of the problem, Jessica doesn't mention how in some families (especially mine) the desire of parents for their sons to have kids can be especially common in a household of all male siblings. While these complaints do not bring the book down in any ways, they are still useful for those who seek to expand this very controversial issue of third wave feminism.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who has kids, who wants kids, or who doesn't want kids.

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