The fascinating story of one of the most important scientific discoveries of the twentieth century.
We know it simply as "the pill," yet its genesis was anything but simple. Jonathan Eig's masterful narrative revolves around four principal characters: the fiery feminist Margaret Sanger, who was a champion of birth control in her campaign for the rights of women but neglected her own children in pursuit of free love; the beautiful Katharine McCormick, who owed her fortune to her wealthy husband, the son of the founder of International Harvester and a schizophrenic; the visionary scientist Gregory Pincus, who was dismissed by Harvard in the 1930s as a result of his experimentation with in vitro fertilization but who, after he was approached by Sanger and McCormick, grew obsessed with the idea of inventing a drug that could stop ovulation; and the telegenic John Rock, a Catholic doctor from Boston who battled his own church to become an enormously effective advocate in the effort to win public approval for the drug that would be marketed by Searle as Enovid.
Spanning the years from Sanger’s heady Greenwich Village days in the early twentieth century to trial tests in Puerto Rico in the 1950s to the cusp of the sexual revolution in the 1960s, this is a grand story of radical feminist politics, scientific ingenuity, establishment opposition, and, ultimately, a sea change in social attitudes. Brilliantly researched and briskly written, The Birth of the Pill is gripping social, cultural, and scientific history.
With these moving, vivid, and utterly distinctive poems, Katha Pollitt reminds us that poetry can be both profound and accessible, and reconfirms her standing in the first rank of modern American poets.
These stories are difficult to read, because an abortion is an act of violence, harming not only the obvious victim—the unborn child-- but also the mother, the father, the doctor, and everyone else involved. But these stories also offer hope, for they show that anyone, no matter what part the person has played in an abortion, can start anew, can make amends for past mistakes. They demonstrate that the first step on that journey is telling the truth, as these courageous individuals do in these pages.
"Those of us that have worked in the abortion industry all live with a constant burden. We can't let our burden slide off of our shoulders; it is what keeps us on fire. It reminds us of why we fight so hard. We have seen death and evil in a way that most haven't—and we participated. But we are forgiven. He who has been forgiven much, loves much. And we love a lot. I am eagerly awaiting the day when we can call all abortionists and clinic workers former and repentant abortion providers."
— Abby Johnson, author
Celebrated for her award-winning political columns, criticism, and poetry, Katha Pollitt now shows us another side of her talent. Learning to Drive is a surprising, revealing, and entertaining collection of essays drawn from the author’s own life.
With deep feeling and sharp insight, Pollitt writes about the death of her father; the sad but noble final days of a leftist study group of which she was a member; and the betrayal and heartbreak inflicted by a man who seriously deceived her. (Her infinitely patient, gentle driving instructor points out her weakness—“Observation, Katha, observation!”) She also offers a candid view of her preoccupation with her ex-lover’s haunting presence on the Internet, and her search there for a secret link that might provide a revelation about him that will Explain Everything.
Other topics include the differences between women and men—“More than half the male members of the Donner party died of cold and starvation, but three quarters of the females survived, saved by that extra layer of fat we spend our lives trying to get rid of”—and the practical implications of political theory: “What if socialism—all that warmhearted folderol about community and solidarity and sharing was just an elaborate con job, a way for men to avoid supporting their kids?”
Learning to Drive demonstrates that while Katha Pollitt is undeniably one of our era’s most profound observers of culture, society, and politics, she is just as impressively a wise, graceful, and honest observer of her own and others’ human nature.
Praise for Learning to Drive
“The kind of book you want to look up from at points so you can read aloud certain passages to a friend or lover.”—Chicago Tribune
“A powerful personal narrative . . . full of insight and charm . . . Pollitt is her own Jane Austen character . . . haughty and modest, moral and irresponsible, sensible and, happily for us, lost in sensibility.”—The New York Review of Books
“With . . . bracing self-honesty, Pollitt takes us through the maddening swirl of contradictions at the heart of being fifty-something: the sense of slowing down, of urgency, of wisdom, of ignorance, of strength, of helplessness, of breakdown, of renewal.”—The Seattle Times
“Essays of breathtaking candor and razor-sharp humor . . . [Pollitt] has outdone herself. . . . [Her] observations are acute and her confessions tonic. Forget face-lifts; Pollitt’s essays elevate the spirit.”—Booklist (starred review)
Writing from her own experience, Kim Ketola sheds light on one of the darkest and most neglected personal issues of our time: the widespread need for healing and spiritual recovery after abortion. After abortion brought the worst trouble into my life I had ever known, writes Ketola, I just couldnt see my way free to believe in Gods love. With a compassionate heart, Ketola offers ten true stories of healing promise from the Bible to help women answer the most common spiritual torments they face: Is abortion a sin? Does God hate me? Where can I turn in my shame and distress? How could I ever tell anyone the truth? And more.
Inspired by Romans 6:4--just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life"--this is a definitive resource to help women see themselves and God anew and--finally--to find spiritual healing.
–Victor Navasky, author of A Matter of Opinion
Through presidential administrations Democratic and Republican, Katha Pollitt has observed and exposed the inconsistencies and illogic of those who stand in the way of progress solely to hold on to their power. In defense of human rights and equality, she assails the corrupt and educates the misguided with compassion, Swiftian wit, and complete literary authority.
In this compelling collection, Pollitt skewers one hypocrite after another. She suggests, for example, that creationists be permitted to oppose the teaching of evolution only so long as they agree to forgo the benefits of the theory–such as flu vaccines. She gently wonders if those who denounced the decision to allow Terri Schiavo to die in peace would themselves be satisfied to be video-diagnosed by Senator Bill Frist. And in the title essay about fundamentalists’ antagonism toward sex education and STD prevention, she asks, “What is it with these right-wing Christians? Faced with a choice between sex and death, they choose death every time.”
Pollitt is one of the most eloquent and persuasive voices in American political conversation of this or any other era, and Virginity or Death! Is a marvelous demonstration of her keen insight, mordant humor, and sense of justice.
“Katha Pollitt has long and rightly been hailed for her brilliance, wit, and great insight into politics, social issues, and women’s rights. As with all of her work, I am enormously grateful for Virginity or Death!, and also deeply jealous.”
–Anne Lamott, author of Traveling Mercies
In San Francisco’s Queen of Vice, Lisa Riggin tells the story of the rise and fall of San Francisco’s “abortion queen” and explores the rivalry between Burns and the city’s newly elected district attorney, Edmund G. “Pat” Brown (father of the present governor of California). Pledging to clean up the graft-ridden city, Brown exposed the hidden yet not-so-secret life of backroom deals, political payoffs, and corrupt city cops. Through the arrest, prosecution, and conviction of Burns, Brown used his success as a stepping-stone for his political rise to California’s governor’s mansion.
Featuring an array of larger-than-life characters, Riggin shows how Cold War domestic ideology and the national quest to return to a more traditional America quickly developed into a battle against internal decay. Based on a combination of newspaper accounts, court records, and personal interviews, San Francisco’s Queen of Vice reveals how the drama played out in the life and trial of one of the wealthiest women in California history.
One of the main topics of cultural conversation during the last decade was the supposed "fertility crisis," and whether modern women could figure out a way to have it all-a successful, demanding career and the required 2.3 children-before their biological clock stopped ticking. Now, however, conversation has turned to whether it's necessary to have it all (see Anne-Marie Slaughter) or, perhaps more controversial, whether children are really a requirement for a fulfilling life. The idea that some women and men prefer not to have children is often met with sharp criticism and incredulity by the public and mainstream media.
In this provocative and controversial collection of essays, curated by writer Meghan Daum, sixteen acclaimed writers explain why they have chosen to eschew parenthood. Contributors include Lionel Shriver, Sigrid Nunez, Kate Christiensen, Elliott Holt, Geoff Dyer, and Tim Kreider, among others, who will give a unique perspective on the overwhelming cultural pressure of parenthood.
Selfish, Shallow, and Self-Absorbed makes a thoughtful and passionate case for why parenthood is not the only path in life, taking our parent-centric, kid-fixated, baby-bump-patrolling culture to task in the process. What emerges is a more nuanced, diverse view of what it means to live a full, satisfying life.
A kind, bookish only child born in the 1940s, Alice learned the virtues of politeness early on from her stolid parents and small Wisconsin hometown. But a tragic accident when she was seventeen shattered her identity and made her understand the fragility of life and the tenuousness of luck. So more than a decade later, when she met boisterous, charismatic Charlie Blackwell, she hardly gave him a second look: She was serious and thoughtful, and he would rather crack a joke than offer a real insight; he was the wealthy son of a bastion family of the Republican party, and she was a school librarian and registered Democrat. Comfortable in her quiet and unassuming life, she felt inured to his charms. And then, much to her surprise, Alice fell for Charlie.
As Alice learns to make her way amid the clannish energy and smug confidence of the Blackwell family, navigating the strange rituals of their country club and summer estate, she remains uneasy with her newfound good fortune. And when Charlie eventually becomes President, Alice is thrust into a position she did not seek–one of power and influence, privilege and responsibility. As Charlie’s tumultuous and controversial second term in the White House wears on, Alice must face contradictions years in the making: How can she both love and fundamentally disagree with her husband? How complicit has she been in the trajectory of her own life? What should she do when her private beliefs run against her public persona?
In Alice Blackwell, New York Times bestselling author Curtis Sittenfeld has created her most dynamic and complex heroine yet. American Wife is a gorgeously written novel that weaves class, wealth, race, and the exigencies of fate into a brilliant tapestry–a novel in which the unexpected becomes inevitable, and the pleasures and pain of intimacy and love are laid bare.
BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from Curtis Sittenfeld's Sisterland.
Praise for American Wife
“Curtis Sittenfeld is an amazing writer, and American Wife is a brave and moving novel about the intersection of private and public life in America. Ambitious and humble at the same time, Sittenfeld refuses to trivialize or simplify people, whether real or imagined.”
“What a remarkable (and brave) thing: a compassionate, illuminating, and beautifully rendered portrait of a fictional Republican first lady with a life and husband very much like our actual Republican first lady’s. Curtis Sittenfeld has written a novel as impressive as it is improbable.”
Undivided Rights presents a textured understanding of the reproductive rights movement by placing the experiences, priorities, and activism of women of color in the foreground. Using historical research, original organizational case studies, and personal interviews, the authors illuminate how women of color have led the fight to control their own bodies and reproductive destinies. Undivided Rights shows how women of color—-starting within their own Latina, African American, Native American, and Asian American communities—have resisted coercion of their reproductive abilities. Projected against the backdrop of the mainstream pro-choice movement and radical right agendas, these dynamic case studies feature the groundbreaking work being done by health and reproductive rights organizations led by women-of-color.
The book details how and why these women have defined and implemented expansive reproductive health agendas that reject legalistic remedies and seek instead to address the wider needs of their communities. It stresses the urgency for innovative strategies that push beyond the traditional base and goals of the mainstream pro-choice movement—strategies that are broadly inclusive while being specific, strategies that speak to all women by speaking to each woman. While the authors raise tough questions about inclusion, identity politics, and the future of women’s organizing, they also offer a way out of the limiting focus on "choice."
Undivided Rights articulates a holistic vision for reproductive freedom. It refuses to allow our human rights to be divvied up and parceled out into isolated boxes that people are then forced to pick and choose among.
In the years before Roe v. Wade, women seeking to end their unwanted pregnancies had limited options—many of them dangerous, even potentially fatal, and nearly all of them illegal. This groundbreaking work by sociologist Nancy Howell Lee, first published in 1969, takes an intimate look at the entire abortion process—from the initial decision to terminate a pregnancy through the procedure itself and the aftermath—providing an incomparable view of what is still one of the most controversial and divisive issues in America.
Based on interviews with one hundred fourteen women who had illegal abortions, Howell Lee’s book reveals how the abortions were procured and paid for, and looks at the lasting effects the experience had on the participants. The interviewees were open and honest about what influenced their decisions, how they conducted their search for someone to perform the procedure, and the physical and emotional aftereffects. With many state governments across America currently passing new legislation that restricts and, in many cases, effectively bans abortion, an eventual return to the pre-Roe days threatens the well-being of millions of women, making Nancy Howell Lee’s pioneering study more relevant than ever. It is a must-read for all those interested in reproductive rights issues.
Today’s political climate leaves no doubt that American women are still being assaulted by the same antifeminist backlash messages that Susan Faludi brilliantly exposed in her 1991 bestseller. When it was first published, Backlash made headlines for puncturing popular media myths like the “infertility epidemic” and the “man shortage.” The statistic-defying, willfully fictitious coverage, Faludi pointed out, contributed to an anti-woman backlash. The fifteenth anniversary edition, with an updated preface by the author, brings backlash consciousness into the 21st century.
Faludi’s words seem especially prophetic in post-Trump America. That glass ceiling remains unshattered, women are still punished for wanting to succeed, and reproductive rights are still hanging by a thread. But Backlash is an alarm bell for women of every generation—waking us up to the dangers that we all face.
In 1973, the Supreme Court handed down its landmark Roe v. Wade decision legalizing abortion, and more than forty years later the issue continues to spark controversy and divisiveness. But behind this historic legal case lie the battles women fought to establish their rights to use contraceptives and choose to have an abortion. Liberty and Sexuality traces these political and legal struggles in the decades leading up to Roe v. Wade—including the momentous 1965 Supreme Court ruling in Griswold v. Connecticut that established a constitutional “right to privacy.” Garrow personalizes the struggles by detailing the vital contributions made by dozens of crusaders who tirelessly paved the way.
This expansive and substantial work also addresses the threats to sexual privacy and the legality of abortion that have risen since Roe v. Wade. With abortion still a contentious subject on the national political landscape, Liberty and Sexuality is not just a historical account of the right to choose, but an indispensable read about preserving a freedom that continues to divide America.
With the end of clinic-front activism, lawyers and politicians took on the fight. Anti-abortion activists moved away from a doomed frontal assault on Roe v. Wade and adopted an incremental strategy—putting anti-abortion causes on the offensive in friendly state forums and placing reproductive rights advocates on the defense in the courts. The Supreme Court ruling on Whole Woman's Health v. Hellerstedt in 2016 makes the stakes for abortion politics higher than ever. This book elucidates how—and why.
Pro-Choice and Christian explores the biblical, theological, political, and medical aspects of the debate in order to provide a thoughtful Christian argument for a pro-choice position with regard to abortion issues. Kira Schlesinger considers relevant Scriptures, the politics of abortion in the United States, and the human realities making abortion a vital issue of justice and compassion. By examining choice from a Christian perspective, Schlesinger provides a common vocabulary for discussing faith and reproductive rights.
This book unashamedly calls mainstream feminists, journalists and Western politicians to account for their silence and – in some cases – vocal justification of the persecution of women because of an absolutist loyalty to abortion. It asks uncomfortable questions to those who claim to believe in women's empowerment: Where is their passionate outrage when Chinese women are forcibly aborted and sterilised? Where is their concern for the thousands of baby girls killed by abortion every year because their lives are held as worthless simply for being female? What about the thousands of women used as surrogates for wealthy Western couples, treated as chattels and denied their most basic human rights?
But the book also tackles difficult issues for the pro-life side—the need for a sensitive, realistic approach to problematic pregnancies and the importance of confronting the continued exploitation and abuse of women within a sexualised society.
Pro-life feminism is not only possible; it is vital if the complex struggles facing women are to be adequately met. The Abolition of Woman is a rallying cry to feminists to stand with the pro-life movement, fighting to build a society in which women are equal and every human life is protected.
A National Book Critics Circle Award Finalist
A New York Times Book Review Top 10 Book of the Year
A Facebook "Year of Books" Selection
One of the Best Books of the Year
* National Book Critics Circle Award finalist * The New York Times Book Review (Top 10) * Entertainment Weekly (Top 10) * New York Magazine (Top 10)* Chicago Tribune (Top 10) * Publishers Weekly (Top 10) * Time Out New York (Top 10) * Los Angeles Times * Kirkus * Booklist * NPR's Science Friday * Newsday * Slate * Refinery 29 * And many more...
Why do we fear vaccines? A provocative examination by Eula Biss, the author of Notes from No Man's Land, winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award
Upon becoming a new mother, Eula Biss addresses a chronic condition of fear-fear of the government, the medical establishment, and what is in your child's air, food, mattress, medicine, and vaccines. She finds that you cannot immunize your child, or yourself, from the world.
In this bold, fascinating book, Biss investigates the metaphors and myths surrounding our conception of immunity and its implications for the individual and the social body. As she hears more and more fears about vaccines, Biss researches what they mean for her own child, her immediate community, America, and the world, both historically and in the present moment. She extends a conversation with other mothers to meditations on Voltaire's Candide, Bram Stoker's Dracula, Rachel Carson's Silent Spring, Susan Sontag's AIDS and Its Metaphors, and beyond. On Immunity is a moving account of how we are all interconnected-our bodies and our fates.
Abandoned: The Untold Stories of the Abortion Wars is the story of those children abandoned by abortion, and it is the story of their courageous defenders.
Since 1976, Monica Miller has made it her life's work to defend the unborn: she has counseled pregnant women outside abortion clinics and organized pro-life groups and sit-ins at many of those same clinics. She has blocked abortionists cars, been arrested, and gone to jail. And she has pulled the bodies of thousands of unborn babies out of dumpsters and given them a proper burial.
Abandoned: The Untold Stories of the Abortion Wars is the profound, breathtaking, and often daring journey of one woman, but it is much more than that. It is a history of the Pro-Life movement since Roe vs. Wade, a suspenseful, true-life tale of life and death, an insightful look into the unique and terrible horror of abortion, and a plea for the protection of the most helpless and innocent members of the human family.
The New York Times bestselling investigation into the sexual, economic, and emotional lives of women is “an informative and thought-provoking book for anyone—not just the single ladies—who want to gain a greater understanding of this pivotal moment in the history of the United States” (The New York Times Book Review).
In 2009, award-winning journalist Rebecca Traister started All the Single Ladies about the twenty-first century phenomenon of the American single woman. It was the year the proportion of American women who were married dropped below fifty percent; and the median age of first marriages, which had remained between twenty and twenty-two years old for nearly a century (1890–1980), had risen dramatically to twenty-seven.
But over the course of her vast research and more than a hundred interviews with academics and social scientists and prominent single women, Traister discovered a startling truth: the phenomenon of the single woman in America is not a new one. And historically, when women were given options beyond early heterosexual marriage, the results were massive social change—temperance, abolition, secondary education, and more. Today, only twenty percent of Americans are married by age twenty-nine, compared to nearly sixty percent in 1960.
“An informative and thought-provoking book for anyone—not just single ladies” (The New York Times Book Review), All the Single Ladies is a remarkable portrait of contemporary American life and how we got here, through the lens of the unmarried American woman. Covering class, race, sexual orientation, and filled with vivid anecdotes from fascinating contemporary and historical figures, “we’re better off reading Rebecca Traister on women, politics, and America than pretty much anyone else” (The Boston Globe).
In 2011, Susan G. Komen for the Cure was growing weary of the “pink” being tarnished by its health grants to Planned Parenthood (PPH), whose many controversies were fueling backlash against Komen. They wanted to remove themselves from the pro-life/abortion debate and made what they thought was a rational, reasonable decision: seek neutral ground in the culture war by severing ties with Planned Parenthood—and in turn, eliminate a major headache while opening a new, robust fund-raising channel.
Karen Handel, the organization’s Senior Vice President of Public Policy, was tasked with identifying options to disengage. In November, the Komen management and board decided to move forward. Komen believed that they and PPH had made a “gentle ladies” pact, agreeing to part ways amicably and acknowledging that a media firestorm was in no one’s best interest. Yet, six weeks later, PPH unleashed a media campaign so viral and so seamlessly executed that it must have been in the works for some time. PPH attacked Komen against the backdrop of the Obama administration’s clash with the Catholic Church over contraception. After just three days, following hysterical cries that “Komen was abandoning women,” Komen capitulated and reversed course. Handel—a lifelong pro-life Republican who was raised Catholic—was immediately made the target. She resigned within days of Komen’s reversal. Liberals called her a right-wing Trojan horse. The pro-life community hailed her as a hero. She insists she is neither.
Why did Planned Parenthood attack? Was Komen simply a pawn in something bigger? In this book, Karen Handel finally speaks.
For at least a decade, Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the world’s leading breast cancer organization, had been dealing with the backlash from pro-life conservatives because of its grants to Planned Parenthood, the world’s largest abortion provider. According to Karen Handel, Komen’s Senior Vice President of Public Policy in 2011, the two organizations had mutually agreed to part ways amicably, but then Planned Parenthood surprisingly unleashed a media attack against Komen, waving the banner of women’s health as a shield for its underlying political agenda. Public criticism against Komen intensified with damaging consequences, eventually concluding in Komen’s surrender and Karen’s resignation.
In daring to walk away, Komen had unwittingly ignited a battle in which it became collateral damage in a larger election-year war between liberals and conservatives for the souls (and votes!) of women and the nation’s conscience—with abortion and contraception linked as ultimate wedge issues.
What exactly went on inside this firestorm of controversy? Were there larger forces at play? In this tell-all, highly charged account, Karen Handel breaks the silence and finally reveals what really happened in the winter of 2011.
The story encompasses networks of people in all parts of society, from state and medical authorities to mothers and midwives, husbands and lovers, employers and neighbors. Jaffary focuses on key topics including virginity, conception, contraception and abortion, infanticide, "monstrous" births, and obstetrical medicine. Her approach yields surprising insights into the emergence of modernity in Mexico. Over the course of the nineteenth century, for example, expectations of idealized womanhood and female sexual virtue gained rather than lost importance. In addition, rather than being obliterated by European medical practice, features of pre-Columbian obstetrical knowledge, especially of abortifacients, circulated among the Mexican public throughout the period under study. Jaffary details how, across time, localized contexts shaped the changing history of reproduction, contraception, and maternity.
Paris in the 1920s shimmers with excitement, dissipation, and freedom. It is a place of intoxicating ambition, passion, art, and discontent, where louche jazz venues like the Chameleon Club draw expats, artists, libertines, and parvenus looking to indulge their true selves. It is at the Chameleon where the striking Lou Villars, an extraordinary athlete and scandalous cross-dressing lesbian, finds refuge among the club’s loyal denizens, including the rising Hungarian photographer Gabor Tsenyi, the socialite and art patron Baroness Lily de Rossignol; and the caustic American writer Lionel Maine.
As the years pass, their fortunes—and the world itself—evolve. Lou falls desperately in love and finds success as a race car driver. Gabor builds his reputation with startlingly vivid and imaginative photographs, including a haunting portrait of Lou and her lover, which will resonate through all their lives. As the exuberant twenties give way to darker times, Lou experiences another metamorphosis—sparked by tumultuous events—that will warp her earnest desire for love and approval into something far more.
The abortion debate in the United States is confused. Ratings-driven media coverage highlights extreme views and creates the illusion that we are stuck in a hopeless stalemate. In this book Charles Camosy argues that our polarized public discourse hides the fact that most Americans actually agree on the major issues at stake in abortion morality and law.
Unpacking the complexity of the abortion issue, Camosy shows that placing oneself on either side of the typical polarizations -- pro-life vs. pro-choice, liberal vs. conservative, Democrat vs. Republican -- only serves to further confuse the debate and limits our ability to have fruitful dialogue. Camosy then proposes a new public policy that he believes is consistent with the beliefs of the broad majority of Americans and supported by the best ideas and arguments about abortion from both secular and religious sources.
Halkias’s analysis combines telling fragments of contemporary Athenian culture, Greek history, media coverage of abortion and the declining birth rate, and fieldwork in Athens at an obstetrics/gynecology clinic and a family-planning center. Halkias conducted in-depth interviews with one hundred and twenty women who had had two or more abortions and observed more than four hundred gynecological exams at a state family-planning center. She reveals how intimate decisions and the public preoccupation with the low birth rate connect to nationalist ideas of race, religion, freedom, resistance, and the fraught encounter between modernity and tradition. The Empty Cradle of Democracy is a startling examination of how assumptions underlying liberal democracy are betrayed while the nation permeates the body and understandings of gender and sexuality complicate the nation-building projects of late modernity.
The ordained Baptist minister could have accepted a lesser sentence of community service, provided he agreed never to return to the clinic. But he preferred spending thirty days in the county jail to forfeiting his constitutional right to free speech and his Christian duty to offer help to women in need, most of whom were black like him. Two higher courts eventually exonerated him: one overturned his criminal conviction, and the other judged that the enforcement of the Oakland "bubble law" was unconstitutional.
Walter's dramatic days in prison, where he lived and preached the gospel and won the hearts of fellow inmates, are detailed in this book. The political machinations that created the bubble law and then entrapped Walter are also described, using public records. Both stories are told in the context of Walter's background as the descendant of black slaves and the disciple of his hero Martin Luther King Jr., whose niece, Alveda, has written the foreword for this book.
She ends on a serious note— because the ultimate problem is the silencing of women who have something to say, including those saying things like, “He’s trying to kill me!”
This book features that now-classic essay with six perfect complements, including an examination of the great feminist writer Virginia Woolf ’s embrace of mystery, of not knowing, of doubt and ambiguity, a highly original inquiry into marriage equality, and a terrifying survey of the scope of contemporary violence against women.
Writer, historian, and activist Rebecca Solnit is the author of eighteen or so books on feminism, western and indigenous history, popular power, social change and insurrection, wandering and walking, hope and disaster, including the books Men Explain Things to Me and Hope in the Dark, both also with Haymarket; a trilogy of atlases of American cities; The Faraway Nearby; A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities that Arise in Disaster; A Field Guide to Getting Lost; Wanderlust: A History of Walking; and River of Shadows, Eadweard Muybridge and the Technological Wild West (for which she received a Guggenheim, the National Book Critics Circle Award in criticism, and the Lannan Literary Award). A product of the California public education system from kindergarten to graduate school, she is a columnist at Harper's and a regular contributor to the Guardian.
Originally published in 1981.
The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.
Beating Hearts maintains that sentience, or the ability to have subjective experiences, grounds a being's entitlement to moral concern. The authors argue that nearly all human exploitation of animals is unjustified. Early abortions do not contradict the sentience principle because they precede fetal sentience, and Beating Hearts explains why the mere potential for sentience does not create moral entitlements. Late abortions do raise serious moral questions, but forcing a woman to carry a child to term is problematic as a form of gender-based exploitation. These ethical explorations lead to a wider discussion of the strategies deployed by the pro-life and animal rights movements. Should legal reforms precede or follow attitudinal changes? Do gory images win over or alienate supporters? Is violence ever principled? By probing the connections between debates about abortion and animal rights, Beating Hearts uses each highly contested set of questions to shed light on the other.
Written for high school and college students as well as for general audiences seeking to better understand opposing viewpoints, it gives readers essential background information and addresses persistent questions regarding the abortion debate. The new Perspectives chapter features the compelling voices of those engaged in the front lines of this battle alongside those of scholars from a range of disciplinary perspectives. Notable activists and leading advocacy groups are profiled, followed by the latest data on abortion rates and public opinion. Carefully curated documents and recommended news outlets, websites, documentaries, and academic readings invite continued exploration.
It begins with Peter, a devoted man of faith, as he is called to the mission of a lifetime, one that takes him galaxies away from his wife, Bea. Peter becomes immersed in the mysteries of an astonishing new environment, overseen by an enigmatic corporation known only as USIC. His work introduces him to a seemingly friendly native population struggling with a dangerous illness and hungry for Peter’s teachings—his Bible is their “book of strange new things.” But Peter is rattled when Bea’s letters from home become increasingly desperate: typhoons and earthquakes are devastating whole countries, and governments are crumbling. Bea’s faith, once the guiding light of their lives, begins to falter.
Suddenly, a separation measured by an otherworldly distance, and defined both by one newly discovered world and another in a state of collapse, is threatened by an ever-widening gulf that is much less quantifiable. While Peter is reconciling the needs of his congregation with the desires of his strange employer, Bea is struggling for survival. Their trials lay bare a profound meditation on faith, love tested beyond endurance, and our responsibility to those closest to us.
Marked by the same bravura storytelling and precise language that made The Crimson Petal and the White such an international success, The Book of Strange New Things is extraordinary, mesmerizing, and replete with emotional complexity and genuine pathos.
In this UNC Press Short, excerpted from Choice and Coercion, Schoen explains the legal construction of North Carolina's sterilization program, which lasted far longer than similar programs in other states, and demonstrates through the stories of several women how the state was able to deny women who were poor, uneducated, African American, or "promiscuous" reproductive autonomy in multiple ways.
UNC Press Shorts excerpt compelling, shorter narratives from selected best-selling books published by the University of North Carolina Press and present them as engaging, quick reads. Presented exclusively as e-books, these shorts present essential concepts, defining moments, and concise introductions to topics. They are intended to stir the imagination and courage exploration of the original publications from which they are drawn.
In Generation Unbound, Isabel V. Sawhill offers a third approach: change "drifters" into "planners." In a well-written and accessible survey of the impact of family structure on child well-being, Sawhill contrasts "planners," who are delaying parenthood until after they marry, with "drifters," who are having unplanned children early and outside of marriage. These two distinct patterns are contributing to an emerging class divide and threatening social mobility in the United States.
Sawhill draws on insights from the new field of behavioral economics, showing that it is possible, by changing the default, to move from a culture that accepts a high number of unplanned pregnancies to a culture in which adults only have children when they are ready to be a parent.