Maybe One

Maybe One : A Case for Smaller Families

3.57 (196 ratings by Goodreads)

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Bill McKibben argues that the earth is becoming dangerously overcrowded, and that if more of us chose to have only one child, it would make a crucial difference toward insuring a healthy future for ourselves and our planet. But the environment alone may not persuade most people to consider having just one child, as eighty percent of Americans have siblings. Powerful stereotypes about only children--that they're spoiled, selfish, or maladjusted in some way--still persist. McKibben, the proud father of an only child himself, debunks these myths, citing research about the many emotional and intellectual strengths only children possess. Contrary to the old folk wisdom, only children are very much like everyone else; they are no more likely to be lonely, shy, or difficult to get along with than children with siblings. Only children also receive the benefits of more parental resources and time that are denied to kids with siblings: higher test scores and levels of achievement in school, and greater development of positive personality traits, like maturity and self-control.At once a powerful personal argument and an accessible exploration of what overpopulation could mean to human life, Maybe One is a provocative yet well-reasoned opening to what will be an important and lasting debate.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 254 pages
  • 132.08 x 198.12 x 20.32mm | 226.8g
  • Penguin Putnam Inc
  • India
  • English
  • 0452280923
  • 9780452280922
  • 999,371

Review quote

"What stands out in this eloquent book... is McKibben's wonderfully illuminating and entertaining work in tracking down our national prejudice against only children and single-child families. There and throughout this call to arms, the reader feels the added dimension of a father's love."--Publishers Weekly "A timely book."--Booklist "An impassioned call for Americans to limit their offspring in the name of the planet."--Kirkus Reviews "A warmly personal exploration of what may be humankind's most compelling dilemma."--The San Francisco Chronicle "One of those rare books that encourages the reader to think and gives us the tools with which to do so; it has a point of view without ever becoming doctrinaire. For all its sobering issues, it is a delight to read. McKibben is that better kind of optimist, one who sees a problem and finds liberation in sculpting an answer."--The Los Angeles Times Sunday Book Review "Compelling."--The Boston Globe
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About Schumann Distinguished Scholar Bill McKibben

Bill McKibben is the author of more than a dozen books, including The End of Nature, Enough: Staying Human in an Engineered Age, and Deep Economy. A former staff writer for the New Yorker, he writes often for Harper's, National Geographic, and the New York Review of Books, among other publications. He is the founder of the environmental organizations Step It Up and, a global warming awareness campaign that in October 2009 coordinated what CNN called "the most widespread day of political action in the planet's history." He is a scholar in residence at Middlebury College and lives in Vermont with his wife, the writer Sue Halpern, and their daughter.
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Table of contents

Part One: Famiy
Part Two: Species
Part Three: Nation
Part Four: Self
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Rating details

196 ratings
3.57 out of 5 stars
5 18% (36)
4 36% (70)
3 34% (66)
2 9% (18)
1 3% (6)
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