«Selfish, Shallow, and Self-Absorbed: Sixteen Writers on Their Decision Not To Have Kids» is something strange with the longest name in history, and without the author — a collection of essays by 16 writers, who reflect on why they refused to have children. It is worth noting that most of the writers unfamiliar to me. Or to be more precise, the writers, because the majority of the authors in the book are female. Of the sixteen people, only three men, but the rest, as you can guess, women. Already from this we can draw some significant conclusion, but the simplest explanation is usually correct, but for me the simplest such gender predominance explanation is the difference in social pressure on women and men in the matter of reproduction.
Over women prevails the obligation at least once to use my uterus for the alleged main purpose, that is to carry and give birth to the child, and the sooner the better. Over men seems to be also something prevail, but it is something that is so ephemeral that many of them are happy to postpone the issue of children under the age of 30 (despite the scientific evidence that the probability of men to conceive a child with schizophrenia and autism is increasing every year just after the thirtieth).
Returning to the familiar to us by the writers, I want to remind Lionel Shriver, author of the novel «We Need to Talk About Kevin». In this collection she published an essay called “Be Here Now Means Be Gone Later”, which frankly, and sometimes even too, paints the horror of the future of our world. The horror lies in the fact that according to statistics the number of children among educated white population of the United States gradually declining (1.79 children per woman in her lifetime), while Hispanic female in the United States has, on average, 2.35 child. In the future, according to estimates Shriver, this means that in America, Spanish-speaking residents will not 1 person out of 6, and one in three.
Her essay consists of such reasoning. Shriver laments that at the time, as in Niger, each woman gives birth to a 7.6 children, these girls stop at 1.6. And so on in the same spirit. Gently call such arguments anti-liberal, or to be more precise, racist that, considering the tolerance to different ethnic groups in the US, seems to combine the two. In a decent society is if and think to myself, out loud and still not talking.
All essays in the collection is quite diverse. Many authors are United not a good childhood: parents-alcoholics, drug addicts and abuser. Someone who likes kids, entertains nephews, and spoilt adoptive daughters. Someone physically can’t stand the screaming and smug faces of the children, to whom the stele in adults (as an English writer Geoff Dyer.
No one author of 16 there is no single answer to the question “why don’t you have children?”. Some of them had abortions but have not been confident in your decision. Some wanted to have a child but their partner didn’t want to. Someone pressured work commitments, and the pregnancy was completely out of place. In General, the answer to the question of what leads a person to such a decision may not be short.
People are generally rational in matters of reproduction is not really able to think. This also applies to those who have children and those who pleasure from it refused. This happens subconsciously, so the attempt to analyze these solutions often lead to long-winded reflections, and well even if people maybe its to Express the position. Most, however, limited to fragmentary exclamations “how else!” and “well we must do something”.
This collection is valuable. Writers are still people who earn a living from your ability to convey that to the reader. Therefore, to know their rationale for such a serious decision I was very curious. Many essays are well disclosed the psychology of the person, relationships with parents and the mother (not all, but many). Besides the experience of others is always interesting, especially given the importance of the issue raised.