Overwhelmed: Work, Love and Play When No One Has the Time

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Harper Collins, Mar 11, 2014 - Biography & Autobiography - 368 pages

An award-winning journalist and a mother, Brigid Schulte was feeling overwhelmed by the demands of her work and home lives. As journalists do, she decided to find out if she was alone in this feeling and how she could fix it. She was relieved to discover that most working mothers felt as crazed as she did. Few of them were really enjoying “leisure” time. They weren’t complaining; they chose to have children and to work, and they made the best of it. But what about that term women’s magazines are so fond of: “me time”? Was there anything working mothers could do to make their lives feel less like a treadmill gone haywire? Anything they could change?

Schulte interviewed working mothers and examined how not just individual pressures but biological, societal, economic and cultural ones were splintering their days into slivered messes. She explored everything from the wiring of the female brain to male–female income distribution and the current state of gender equality in the workplace and home. She talked to neuroscientists, sociologists, and above all, other working mothers in order to tease out all the factors contributing to our collective overwhelm. And then she sought out insights and answers and inspiration: investigating companies, travelling across Western Europe to meet families and researchers, and seeking out the sages of the age for their wisdom on how to manage time.

Overwhelmed is the story of what she found out. It’s a map of the stresses--individual, historical, biological and societal--that have ripped working mothers’ leisure to shreds, and a look at how it might be possible to put the pieces back together.

 

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User Review  - rivkat - LibraryThing

Hey, it’s another book about how lack of equality is terrible for men and women both, through the framing of time! Women experience more “contaminated time,” where we’re trying to do more than one ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AnneMichaud - LibraryThing

As someone who cares deeply about the time and money pressures on young families, I give this book my highest praise. I wish I had written it. Overwhelmed is meticulously researched and engagingly ... Read full review

Contents

THE TEST OF TIME
LEISURE IS FOR NUNS
TOO BUSY TO LIVE
THE INCREDIBLE SHRINKING BRAIN
THE IDEAL WORKER IS NOT YOUR MOTHER
A TALE OF TWO PATS
WHEN WORK WORKS
THE STALLED GENDER REVOLUTION
THE CULT OF INTENSIVE MOTHERHOOD
NEW DADS
HYGGE IN DENMARK
LET US PLAY
FINDING TIME
TOWARD TIME SERENITY
About the Publisher
Copyright

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About the author (2014)

BRIGID SCHULTE is an award-winning journalist for The Washington Post and The Washington Post Magazine. Born and raised in Portland, Oregon, she graduated from the University of Portland with degrees in English literature, journalism and German and French. She has a master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in New York City. She has won numerous writing awards, including the Pulitzer Prize. She lives in Alexandria, Virginia, with her two children, Liam and Tessa, and her husband, Tom Bowman, Pentagon correspondent for NPR.

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