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Love, and Be Silent

Regretting Motherhood:  A Study by orna donath north atlantic, 272 pages, $15.95 In March, a self-help author tweeted that whereas he once intended to have many children, now, after putting in a few years on his first, he had decided that one was enough, and more than enough, and if he had it . . . . Continue Reading »

Embodied Caregiving

Dependency is just as much a part of the human experience as the ability to reason. And yet, modern thought has largely neglected dependency, instead touting individual autonomy and rational self-interest. If we are to recover the human person’s proper relationship with others, we must turn to . . . . Continue Reading »

Mary, Mother of All

My children shower me with affection, so I have no real reason to go fishing for more love. But I do it anyway. The problem is, when I ask if they love Mommy or Daddy more, they always insist that they love us equally. Sometimes I load the question the way political pollsters do: “Daddy has been . . . . Continue Reading »

On the Demise of Fatherhood

It is news to no one that, in the Western world in general and the United States in particular, the call to fatherhood is being heeded less and less. Anyone unfortunate enough to pick up a newspaper is painfully aware that one-third of American children live without any father and that, in many inner cities, the out-of-wedlock birth rate exceeds seventy percent. Also well known, though rarely acknowledged, is the devastation that such a lack of paternity has wreaked on children and society more generally. Fatherless children have rates of incarceration, criminal activity, possession of firearms, poverty, drug and alcohol abuse, teen pregnancy, incompletion of school, and overall parental neglect and maltreatment alarmingly higher than their two-parent counterparts.

Coupled with the staggering divorce rate and the move in the West toward alternative lifestyles”permanent bachelorhood, cohabitation, or “serial monogamy””it is now possible, without the slightest exaggeration, to begin using phrases such as “the end of the human family.” Continue Reading »

Infanticide for Beginners

It was the issue of abortion that taught me to be suspicious of the word “reform.” It was the early 1960s and all right-minded people were in favor of “abortion reform.” I assumed I should be too until it gradually dawned on me, slow learner that I was, that people speaking of abortion . . . . Continue Reading »

My Mother, the Expert

When I was a sophomore in high school in Colorado in the late 1950s, I was required, as were all female students, to take a course in “home economics.” The home economics movement had emerged out of a progressivist desire to “scientize” a hitherto amateur activity. The complicated tasks of . . . . Continue Reading »

Feminism: Beyond the Second Stage

Barbara Bush finally got to speak at the Wellesley commencement last June, despite protests from 150 seniors that she did not embody the qualities that Wellesley seeks to instill in its students because she had dropped out of Smith to become a wife and mother. At about the same time, another Smithie . . . . Continue Reading »

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