Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Without Child: Challenging the Stigma of Childlessness” as Want to Read:
Without Child: Challenging the Stigma of Childlessness
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Without Child: Challenging the Stigma of Childlessness

3.61  ·  Rating Details ·  38 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
Without Child challenges the stigma of childlessness by offering childless women the lifeaffirming story of themselves. Beginning with the difficult inner journey a woman faces before finally deciding or realizing she will not bear children, Without Child explores the myth of the childless woman's rejection of the maternal instinct. It also examines the childless woman's r ...more
Paperback, 324 pages
Published March 4th 2014 by Argo-Navis (first published 1996)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Without Child, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Without Child

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
This book got off to a boring start(mostly information about the author and how she came to the realization that she wasn't going to have children). But after that, especially with her historical research on childless women (and childless marriages) it gets really interesting. She discusses probably the biggest issue that childless people struggle with (or in my case, the biggest issue that people bring up when they're quizzing me on why I don't want children) - how are you going to make a diffe ...more
Kristie J.
Oct 16, 2014 Kristie J. rated it liked it
I was very happy to see a comprehensive book about the topic of choosing to be married and not have children. The author approached the topic thoroughly, from a historical perspective, and I appreciated how she included her own feelings about being childfree through her 20's to her 50's. She concluded that there are many "nulliparas", i.e. women who have never had children, who use their childfree freedom to contribute to society and their own personal development and end up happy and contented ...more
Aug 06, 2009 Emily rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
While this book is obviously well-researched (it reads like a PhD dissertation), it just didn’t deliver for me personally. Lisle focused way too much on the fact that non-mothers are creative without having to create children. That’s a wonderful point, but it doesn’t really relate to those of us who aren’t artists or writers like the people she references (constantly) throughout the book. What about those of us who aren’t creative in the traditional sense? Where does that leave us? In hopes of f ...more
Dec 16, 2014 Ruthie rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am not a quick non-fiction reader and this one was a bit slow going for me. The author is definitely very thoughtful with her word choices and phrasing and tries to make every sentence count. Parts of it felt cumbersome to me and I felt like I was plodding through it. But overall, the amount of research and thought she put into this book over the course of her personal life experience and while writing it is staggering to me. Her thoughts and ideas were thought-provoking for me and gave me som ...more
Jan 16, 2016 Lizzie marked it as gave-up-on
The book is academic in tone. It seemed that the emphasis of book is that one chooses "no children" so that an artistic life or extraordinary life can be pursued. This does not resonate for me. I am like most people, I have an average life. It seems the only unordinary aspect of my life is that I am married with no children. I'm not sure what I was looking for in this reading book but I abandoned the book midway not finding it. Therefore I'm not a fair judge of this book's merits.
I would have liked to hear more about women in general and less woe-is-me on a personal level from Ms. Lisle, but then I suppose the book would only have been half as long. Interesting and informative, but it dragged quite a bit and I did a lot of skimming when she started rehashing her personal saga.
Jan 29, 2011 Martha☀ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this back in the days when I was undecided about having children. It was one of many books that helped me decide who I wanted to be when I grew up. Laurie examines the topic from so many angles and opens your mind to the challenges and possibilities of either decision.
Carol Ascher
Aug 02, 2014 Carol Ascher rated it it was amazing
This honest and carefully considered book moves between personal reflections and research to offer support to women who choose not to have children.
Mar 25, 2008 Denise rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
actually did not finish this. subject matter was interesting, and appeared to be well-researched, but it was incredibly dull
Melanie rated it it was amazing
Oct 11, 2013
Alison Wathen 'Herfkens'
Alison Wathen 'Herfkens' rated it it was amazing
Oct 01, 2015
Nancy Spiller
Nancy Spiller rated it really liked it
Oct 31, 2013
Ellen rated it really liked it
Sep 07, 2015
CC Ortiz
CC Ortiz rated it really liked it
Jun 21, 2015
Meghan Schlichting
Meghan Schlichting rated it really liked it
Nov 11, 2010
Kamalamani rated it liked it
Jun 26, 2012
Laurel rated it liked it
Jul 25, 2015
Spring rated it really liked it
Jul 06, 2015
Melissa Macomber
Melissa Macomber rated it liked it
Aug 19, 2008
Carol Ascher
Carol Ascher rated it it was amazing
Jul 27, 2014
HR Dolive
HR Dolive rated it it was amazing
Jan 11, 2016
Angtburg rated it liked it
Sep 19, 2011
Susan Haines
Susan Haines rated it liked it
May 27, 2014
Kerri rated it really liked it
Jan 05, 2008
Nikki rated it really liked it
Dec 05, 2011
Georgina rated it really liked it
Aug 19, 2014
Liz rated it liked it
Aug 29, 2009
Kamalamani rated it really liked it
Apr 13, 2016
Valerie rated it really liked it
Jan 04, 2008
tree rated it did not like it
Dec 28, 2015
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Laurie Lisle began her professional life as a journalist then became a biographer before writing about more personal matters in her latest books.

She lives in the village of Sharon, Connecticut, along with her husband, artist Robert Kipniss. When she is not writing or reading, she is hiking or working in her flower garden.

Laurie wrote the first biographies of two women artists, Georgia O'Keeffe
More about Laurie Lisle...

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »