Why this book?
Adrienne Rich’s book was a clarion call for second-wave feminists to rethink the history of motherhood in the Western world. It inspired and reflected a wave of scholarship in the 1970s and 1980s that rethought the traditional depiction of childbirth before the advent of male-doctor-dominated hospitals as crude and dangerous. Adrienne Rich examined the idealization of mother love as the purest kind of love and exposed the psychic tensions this had created for generations of mothers who could not live up to this ideal. In her chapter "Hands of Iron, Hands of Flesh" she offered a poetic and stinging rebuttal of the notion that childbearing women were safest in the hands of the male medical establishment.
Of Woman Born: Motherhood as Experience and Institution
Why should I read it?
1 author picked Of Woman Born as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.
What is this book about?
In Of Woman Born, originally published in 1976, influential poet and feminist Adrienne Rich examines the patriarchic systems and political institutions that define motherhood. Exploring her own experience-as a woman, a poet, a feminist and a mother-she finds the act of mothering to be both determined by and distinct from the institution of motherhood as it is imposed on all women everywhere. A "powerful blend of research, theory, and self-reflection" (Sandra M. Gilbert, Paris Review), Of Woman Born revolutionised how women thought about motherhood and their own liberation. With a stirring new foreword from National Book Critics Circle Award-winning writer…
- Coming soon!