Motherhood: A Manifesto

Motherhood: A Manifesto

Eliane Glaser

‘Brilliant’ Jenni Murray

‘Liberating, intoxicating’ Zoe Williams

‘Why, after decades of social progress, is motherhood still so much harder than it needs to be?’

Before they become mothers, women are repeatedly reminded that their biological clock is ticking. Once pregnant, a woman’s body becomes public property: she is patronised, panicked, and forbidden from exercising her autonomy. In labour, women’s wishes are overridden, resulting in potentially life-changing injuries and trauma.

When the baby comes home, women begin a life of pay cuts, lost job opportunities, heavier housework, unequal emotional loads, and judgement from all sides. State support and family networks have fallen away, and mothers are censured for every ‘choice’ they make – if they are given real choices at all.

In this searing and vital book, Eliane Glaser asks why mothers are idealised, yet treated so poorly; why campaigns for mothers have become so unfashionable; and what we need to do to shift the needle and improve the business of child-rearing for everyone.

Reviews of Motherhood: A Manifesto

    • ‘Brilliant: at last a young mother brave enough to challenge the Madonna myth’ Jenni Murray
    • ‘It stopped me in my tracks to see so many things that are never said about the profundity, the consequence, the unprettiness of the maternal experience. Radical honesty is a political act, and also a liberating, intoxicating read’ Zoe Williams
    • ‘Startling, provocative and rigorous, this book explains why mothers are so furious and so tired (SO tired!) and how things might change’ Samantha Ellis, author of Take Courage: Anne Brontë and the Art of Life
    • ‘Eliane Glaser brilliantly blends analysis of the all too contemporary injustices of motherhood with a historical perspective, emerging with fresh and vivid insights articulated with verve and wit’ Rebecca Asher, author of Man Up: Boys, Men and Breaking the Male Rules
    • ‘Reading it is like talking to your super-smart and very sensible best friend who has the facts at her fingertips . . . I wish I’d had this book when I was in the thick of it’ Joanna Pocock, The Spectator