The Essential Hip Mama: Writing from the Cutting Edge of Parenting

Ariel Gore

It’s been over a decade since Ariel Gore, in a caffeine-induced brainstorm, invented Hip Mama as her senior project in college. The zine that has grown up alongside Gore’s daughter, has covered subjects from weaning to home schooling with a political edge and a puckish sense of humor. The Essential Hip Mama captures the heart of a decade’s worth of earthy, honest, soulful parenting—and topics from circumcision to dating, abortion to the (mistaken) belief that “mothers don’t fart.” Gore has gathered in one volume the whispers and conversations heard in homes, on playgrounds, and in coffeehouses around the country. Reassuring and hopeful, The Essential Hip Mama is a brilliant testament that one becomes an “expert” simply through the act of mothering, echoing Gore’s own words, “Whenever I’ve needed parenting advice, I’ve put out a call for submissions.” This paperback original offers the most hilarious and heart-wrenching essays from ten years of this quintessential alternative-parenting bible.

status Lost
genre Health » Parenting
publisher Seal Press
publish date November 1, 2004
popularity checked out 5 time(s)


  • By Pi -

    I blasted through this book in a day while half-managing my toddler after reading My Mother Wears Combat Boots. It’s a collage of many women’s voices from many different perspectives, some of them at opposite ends of various spectrums. Touches on gay and queer mamas, single mamas (actually, most of them are single mamas), mamas on “welfare”, teen mamas, and most of all mamas who write. I haven’t read a book this fast since before I was pregnant. That’s saying something.

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