New book explores motherhood in academia

cover of the book "Academic Motherhood in a Post-Seond Wave Context"

cover of the book "Academic Motherhood in a Post-Seond Wave Context"What are the specific challenges faced by women in academia? You may be surprised. According to a new book edited by York women’s studies Professor Andrea O’Reilly (BA Hons. ’85, MA ’87, PhD ’96) and Boston University Professor Lynn O’Brien Hallstein, all is not nearly well in the halls of higher learning.

Academic Motherhood in a Post-Second Wave Context: Challenges, Strategies and Possibilities (Demeter Press) explores what it means to be an academic mother and to think about academic motherhood.

Contributors to the book explore both the personal and specific institutional challenges academic women face, the multifaceted strategies different academic women are implementing to manage those challenges and investigate different theoretical possibilities for how society thinks about academic motherhood.

The 468-page book includes a 46-page introduction, 24 chapters, including O’Reilly’s chapter:
photo of Andrea O'Reilly“I should have married another man; I couldn’t do what I do without him: Intimate Heterosexual Partnerships and their Impact on Mothers’ Success in Academe”.

Andrea O’Reilly

O’Reilly, who teaches in York’s School of Gender, Sexual and Women’s Studies in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, is also the editor and author of several books, including Toni Morrison and Motherhood: A Politics of the Heart (SUNY Press, 2004) and Rocking the Cradle: Thoughts on Motherhood, Feminism and the Possibility of Empowered Mothering (Demeter Press, 2006).

She is the recipient of the 2010 Sarah Shorten Award from the Canadian Association of University Teachers. In 1998 and again in 2009, O’Reilly was given York Teacher of the Year awards, and in 2007, the Atkinson Dean’s Award for Outstanding Research.

For more information, contact Demeter Press at or visit the Demeter Press website.