The concept of fatherlessness has emerged at the center of debates over welfare, poverty, sexuality, divorce, family values, and "racial disorder." Do children need fathers? Do mothers need husbands? Should we celebrate or grieve the loss (or transformation) of fatherhood? This collection brings together the voices of nine highly diverse scholars to reflect on the culturally and politically charged concept of "fatherlessness" and to illustrate the deep and dramatic divisions that constitute public debate on this issue. No other book offers the range of perspectives on the issue of father absence--from conservative to radical feminist--that is presented by this one.