book hack

A Life's Work

Rachel Cusk

5 mins

3 key insights

Visual, audio & text

Acclaimed British novelist Rachel Cusk delivers an honest, unexpected, and multifaceted account of motherhood.


A Life's Work

A Life's Work

by Rachel Cusk


The subject of motherhood has often been neglected from an intellectual perspective. It is seldom depicted at length in literature, philosophy, or political thought. Some have even called it the 'last frontier of feminism.' When narratives do arise around motherhood, they tend to look down on mothers and reduce their experience to trivial matters such as sanitization.

In her 2002 book A Life's Work, Rachel Cusk discusses all aspects of motherhood, from pregnancy to child-rearing, from love to hatred. Cusk has written 11 novels, four works of non-fiction, and a play. Cusk's writing is considered a significant component of contemporary British writing; the author has received the Whitbread First Novel Award and the Somerset Maugham Award. A Life's Work has been recognized as a vitally complex and honest account of motherhood.

Favorite quote

Birth is not merely that which divides women from men: it also divides women from themselves, so that a woman's understanding of what it is to exist is profoundly changed.

- Rachel Cusk

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