Modern Motherhood and the Illusion of Equality
A manifesto for achieving a new equality between the sexes in family life, drawing on international research and case studies.
If we live in an age of equality, why are women are still left holding the baby?
Today women outperform men at school and university. They make a success of their early careers and enter into relationships on their own terms. So it might seem that equality is in the bag. But once they have children, their illusions are swiftly shattered.
Becoming a mother is a tremendously rewarding experience, but, for all the current talk of shared parenting, women still find themselves bearing primary responsibility for bringing up their children, to the detriment of everything else in their lives. Fathers, conversely, are dragooned into the role of main earner, becoming semi-detached from their families. Both men and women put up too little resistance to this pressure, shying away from asking what is really best for themselves and their children. The consequences of this enduring inequality in the home reach far beyond individuals and into society as a whole. A radical new approach is needed if we want to raise our children fairly and happily.
Ranging from antenatal care and maternity leave, to work practices, relationship dynamics and beyond, Shattered exposes the inequalities perpetuated by the state, employers and the parenting industry and suggests imaginative ways forward to achieve more balanced and fulfilling lives.
Rebecca Asher draws on the experiences of mothers and fathers in the UK and around the world in setting out a manifesto for a new model of family life. Engaging and provocative, Shattered is a call to arms for a revolution in parenting.
“This insightful, thrillingly honest, well-argued and often very funny book should be required reading for all thinking parents & prospective parents. What Asher has achieved here is superb.”
“A brilliant and refreshingly honest contribution to the debate on how we raise our children. Rebecca Asher lifts the lid on contemporary parenthood and is unafraid to tackle difficult issues, not least how fathers continue to be excluded from much feminist debate on the reworking of gender roles. As a working mother, this book hit home for me on so many levels. Asher writes in a way that skilfully pursues a compelling argument and thoughtful solutions in an accessible manner. As such, the book deserves a wide audience.”