Monday, October 1, 2018

Perfectly Human by Sarah C Williams

Williams has written a touching memoir of pregnancy and the meaning of personhood. She was teaching history at Oxford. She and her husband had two young daughters when she found out she was pregnant. Then an ultrasound and the news of a lethal skeletal deformity. They were told the child would not live and a decision had to be made. She was determined. She would carry the baby as long as possible.

Williams shares the shock, her feelings, dealing with doctors, her interactions with well meaning Christians, asking the “why” questions, the support of friends, the complications, the final still birth.

This memoir is much more than just a record of events. Williams had decided she would see this journey as an opportunity to know God better. Hers is an extraordinary journey of carrying a child she knew would not survive.

This memoir is also an exploration of what it means to be human. How we treat our weak, she writes, tells us much about our society. (864/1652) The issues of bioethics and the idea of personhood are woven throughout her personal account.

I highly recommend this memoir. It is an touching personal experience in the midst of prenatal testing and decision making issues. It gave this reader much to think about concerning the responsibilities that come with technology and pregnancy.

You can read a sample here.

My rating: 5/5 stars.

Sarah C Williams trained as an historian at the University of Oxford, where she subsequently taught British and European political and cultural history. After seventeen years at Oxford, in 2005 she moved with her family to Vancouver, Canada, where she taught history at Regent College. Today Williams lives with her husband Paul in the Cotswolds, close to the city of Oxford, where she continues her research, writing, and teaching.

Plough Publishing House, 180 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

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