Emily Amick and Rosanna Hertz


Emily Amick is a Knight Community Journalism Fellow at The Anniston Star
in Alabama. She graduated from Wellesley College in 2007 with a degree in
economics. Recently she completed a fellowship with Journalists for Human
Rights at Sister Namibia Magazine in Windhoek, Namibia.


Rosanna Hertz is the Luella LaMer Professor of Sociology and Women's Studies at Wellesley College where she has taught for the past 20 years. Presently she chairs the Women's Studies Department. Her scholarship focuses on diverse families in a changing economy and how social inequality at home and in the workplace comes to shape the experiences of women and men.

Her newest book, Single by Chance, Mothers by Choice: How Women Are Choosing Parenthood without Marriage and Creating the New American Family looks at the changes occurring in women’s lives. As hopes for marriage fade for middle class women today their commitment to motherhood continues. The potent combination of the age-old desire for motherhood and the new possibilities of science are well on their way to creating major changes in the formation and functioning of families. This is a projection of a possible future, one that reevaluates the place of women and men in families. Ultimately, building families from a mother-child core is the future.

A remarkable number of women today are taking the daunting step of having children outside of marriage. In Single By Chance, Mothers By Choice (Oxford University Press 2006 available on , Rosanna Hertz offers the first full-scale account of this fast-growing phenomenon, revealing why these middle class women took this unorthodox path and how they have managed to make single parenthood work for them. Hertz interviewed 65 women--ranging from physicians and financial analysts to social workers, teachers, and secretaries--women who speak candidly about how they manage their lives and families as single mothers. What Hertz discovers are not ideologues but reluctant revolutionaries, women who--whether straight or gay--struggle to conform to the conventional definitions of mother, child, and family. Having tossed out the rulebook in order to become mothers, they nonetheless adhere to time-honored rules about child-rearing. As they tell their stories, they shed light on their paths to motherhood, describing how they summoned up the courage to pursue their dream, how they broke the news to parents, siblings, friends, and co-workers, how they went about buying sperm from fertility banks or adopting children of different races. They recount how their personal and social histories intersected to enable them to pursue their dream of motherhood, and how they navigate daily life. What does it mean to be single' in terms of romance and parenting? How do women juggle earning a paycheck with parenting? What creative ways have women devised to shore up these families? How do they incorporate men into their child-centered families? This book provides concrete, informative answers to all these questions. An epilogue updates the women’s stories.

Rosanna Hertz is also the author of the widely acclaimed More Equal than Others: Women and Men in Dual-Career Marriages (University of California Press.) This work has received scholarly attention in sociology, psychology, economics and women's studies. Her edited and co-edited books include Studying Elites Using Qualitative Methods (Sage), Reflexivity and Voice (Sage), Qualitative Sociology as Everyday Life (Sage), Our Studies, Ourselves: Sociologists’ Lives and Work (Oxford University Press) and Working Families: The Transformation of the American Home (University of California Press).

She has published articles on the following topics: gender inequality in the kibbutz, the division of labor among shiftwork couples, negotiating dual-careers and the American dream, money and authority in dual-earner marriages, the integration of women into the military, sexual identity of bisexual males, the importance of women's studies for women's education, and childcare decision making, See her home page in the Women’s Studies Department for selected articles.

Hertz teaches courses on the changing family and social policy, the social construction of gender, and changing work organizations and the economy. She has had a long-standing interest in social science methodology, which she has incorporated into two courses: “The Feminist Inquiry” and “Classics and New Conventions in Social Research.”

She received her BA at Brandeis University in Sociology and Philosophy and the M.A. and Ph.D. in Sociology from Northwestern University. In addition she completed a two-year post-doctoral fellowship in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.

She has been quoted in such publications as The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Money Magazine, Glamour, Redbook, Cosmopolitan, Newsweek, The Los Angeles Times, The Chicago Tribune, USA Today, and The Boston Globe. She appears frequently in the broadcast media commenting on social problems for local news specials.

November 17, 2011

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