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In How to Be Childless: A History and Philosophy of Life Without Children
, Rachel Chrastil explores the long and fascinating history of childlessness, putting this often-overlooked legacy in conversation with the issues that childless women and men face in the twenty-first century. Eschewing two dominant narratives, that the childless are either barren and alone, or that they are carefree and selfish, How to Be Childless
instead argues that the lives of childless individuals from the past can help all of us expand our range of possibilities for the good life.
In uncovering the voices and experiences of childless women from the past five hundred years, Chrastil demonstrates that the pathways to childlessness, so often simplified as "choice" and "circumstance," are far more complex and interweaving. Balanced, deeply researched, and richly realized, How to be Childless
will empower readers, parents and childless alike, to navigate their lives with purpose.