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"When I was younger, thinking about whether I wanted children, I always came back to this formula: If no one told me anything about the world, I would have invented boyfriends, sex, friendships, art. I would not have invented child-rearing. I would have had to invent all these other things to fulfill real longings in me, but if no one had ever told me that a person could create a person, and raise them into a citizen, it wouldn’t have occurred to me as something to do. In fact, it would have sounded like a task to very much avoid."
In Motherhood, Sheila Heti asks what is gained and what is lost when a woman becomes a mother, treating the most consequential decision of early adulthood with the candor, originality, and wit that have won Heti international acclaim and made How Should A Person Be? required reading for a generation.
In her late thirties, when her friends are asking when they will become mothers, Heti’s narrator urgently considers whether she will do so at all. In a narrative spanning several years, casting among the influence of her peers, partner, and duties to her forbearers, she struggles to make a wise and moral choice. After seeking answers from philosophy, mysticism and chance, she discovers the answer much closer to home.
The result is a courageous, keenly felt, and deeply funny novel that will surely spark a lively conversations about womanhood, parenthood, and about how—and for whom—to live.