The Kindness of Strangers: The Abandonment of Children in Western Europe From Late Antiquity to the Rennaissence, by John Boswell

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In The Kindness of Strangers, John Boswell argues persuasively that child abandonment was a common and morally acceptable practice from antiquity until the Renaissance. Using a wide variety of sources, including drama and mythological-literary texts as well as demographics, Boswell examines the evidence that parents of all classes gave up unwanted children, "exposing" them in public places, donating them to the church, or delivering them in later centuries to foundling hospitals. The Kindness of Strangers presents a startling history of the abandoned child that helps to illustrate the changing meaning of family.

Used. Good condition. Some wear and tear. Minor damage to the top of the book. Minor shelf wear to the bottom and corners of the dust jacket. Price marked in pencil by previous seller.