Climate Anxiety and the Kid Question: Deciding Whether to Have Children in an Uncertain Future (Paperback)
The first book-length exploration of climate-driven reproductive anxiety that places race and social justice at the center.
Eco-anxiety. Climate guilt. Pre-traumatic stress disorder. Solastalgia. The study of environmental emotions and related mental health impacts is a rapidly growing field, but most researchers overlook a closely related concern: reproductive anxiety. Climate Anxiety and the Kid Question is the first comprehensive study of how environmental emotions influence whether, when, and why people today decide to become parents—or not.
Jade S. Sasser argues that we can and should continue to create the families we desire, but that doing so equitably will require deep commitments to social, reproductive, and climate justice. Climate Anxiety and the Kid Question presents original research, drawing from in-depth interviews and national survey results that analyze the role of race in environmental emotions and the reproductive plans young people are making as a result. Sasser concludes that climate emotions and climate justice are inseparable, and that culturally appropriate mental and emotional health services are a necessary component to ensure climate justice for vulnerable communities.
About the Author
Jade S. Sasser is Associate Professor at the University of California, Riverside, author of On Infertile Ground: Population Control and Women's Rights in the Era of Climate Change, and host of the Climate Anxiety and the Kid Question podcast.
"Sasser conducted dozens of interviews and 'was struck by how common climate anxiety is among Gen Zers and how that translates into these anxieties about whether to have kids,' she says. . . . The book places communities of color at the center of the discussion. 'This is an intersectional issue,' Sasser says. 'Climate change hits communities of color differently. Heat events have an impact on pregnancy and birth outcomes, which have long-lasting effects on a child’s growth and development. The people who are hit hardest are pregnant Black women, and the mental and emotional impacts are really hard on communities of color, too.'”
— Publishers Weekly