Newborn Politics

Jillian Bandes
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Posted: Aug 27, 2009 1:29 PM
Katie Roiphe's "My Newborn Is Like A Narcotic," a beautiful essay on the primal attractions of motherhood, has caused a bit of a stir in the lady-blogosphere:
There is an opium-den quality to maternity leave. The high of a love that obliterates everything. A need so consuming that it is threatening to everything you are and care about.
From Kerry Howley, contributing editor at Reason:
I’m grateful for such an honest rendering of what it's like to radically manipulate one’s hormone levels through child production.
Of course, Straw Feminist goes nuts:
You may find yourself longing for adult conversation and wishing you could get a full night’s sleep while your partner feeds the baby for once, but that’s because you’re denying the narcotic effect of your infant’s natural musk!
Alison Gopnik, author of The Philosophical Baby, defends her.
Most of the time evolution really does design us so our experience tracks important and real parts of our condition. Poets and thinkers have long recognized that the particular chemical, biological, and evolutionary phenomenon of human sexual love, with all its absurdities, can put us in touch with something genuinely transcendent and significant.