A Manifesto for Care and Liberation
Does the family stand in the way of autonomous love and shared solidarity? And isn’t it enough just to reform it? According to Sophie Lewis, the nuclear family is at the heart of injustice, and needs to be abolished. In her book she shows what the world would look like in which family relations were replaced by affinity, and where care wasn’t privatised and forced, but fulfilling and collective. The family has established itself in the course of capitalist, colonial and patriarchal history. Abolish the Family: a Manifesto for Care and Liberation therefore examines the history of aspirations to abolish the family, continuing in this project with a critique of contemporary familialism and a demand for anti-family politics. Sophie Lewis is a British writer and lecturer now living in the USA. Her breakthrough came with the publication of her book Full Surrogacy Now: Feminism Against Family (2019), in which she drew attention to the precarisation of surrogate motherhood and proposed a new conception of maternal care as a collective endeavour. In her work she deals with themes of care and physicality from a queer perspective, and follows on from the work of feminist authors such as Donna Haraway and Shulamith Firestone.
Sophie Lewis is a writer and independent scholar living in Philadelphia as an Anglo-Franco-German transplant. Her marxist-transfeminist essays (including viral analyses of octopus documentaries and other wannabe-heterosexual televisual artifacts), have been published in scholarly journals (Paragraph, Signs, Feminist Theory), magazines (n+1, LRB, Boston Review, Harper’s) and newspapers (New York Times). Sophie is the author of Full Surrogacy Now: Feminism Against Family (Verso, 2019), hailed by Donna Haraway as “the seriously radical cry for full gestational justice that I long for.” Her second book, Abolish Family: A Manifesto for Care and Liberation, was published by Salvage Editions in 2022 and has already been translated into German by Fischer Verlag. As a member of the faculty of Brooklyn Institute for Social Research, Sophie teaches courses on social theory, queer feminist politics and anti-work philosophy, online and open to all. Previously, Dr. Lewis studied English Literature (BA) and Nature, Society and Environmental Policy (MSc) at Oxford University; Politics (MA) at the New School for Social Research; and Geography (PhD) at Manchester University. With the “Out of the Woods” writing collective, Lewis co-authored the collection Hope Against Hope: Writings on Ecological Crisis (Common Notions, 2020). As an editor at Blind Field (2017-2021), Sophie helped foster communities of feminist cultural criticism. Now a Visiting Scholar at the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Research on Feminist, Queer and Transgender Studies, Sophie is nevertheless a freelance writer sustained by a Patreon. Currently, she is working on a book for Haymarket on “enemy feminisms.”
Sophie Lewis – Abolish the Family: A Manifesto for Care and Liberation
edition navigation volume 0023
Editor: František Fekete
Translation: Olga Pek
Epilogue: Eliška Koldová, Maja Vusilović
Editing: Elizabet Kovačeva
Language corrections: Věra Becková
Production: Karin Akai, Ema Čabová
Graphic layout: Tereza Hejmová, Jana Hrádková
Printing: Tiskárny Havlíčkův Brod, a. s.
First edition, Prague 2023
Number of pages 128
Cover photo: Anna Daučíková