The cover illustration of New Humanist's winter 2023 issue shows a science fiction-esque image of an eye and test tube. The cover line reads: 'The baby wars'

The winter 2023 issue of New Humanist is on sale now! This issue we're delving in to the future of the family. Subscribe to the print edition for just £27 a year or buy a single issue online and in all good newsagents. Read on for a peek inside the magazine.

The end of sex?

In our cover story, Pavan Amara explores how emerging technologies could revolutionise reproduction. With the possibility of using just one parent's genetic material to create a child in the not-too-distant future and more opportunities for genetic selection, will more people than ever be tempted to create "test-tube babies"? And what will the consequences be?

“'Sex will not remain the main method of reproduction,' says Henry Greely, a Stanford University bioethicist. 'That will be revolutionary for many, but there may be some serious concerns.'”

The battle over "family values"

Gabriele Di Donfrancesco reports from Rome, the centre of an attempt to reassert "traditional values" in Europe. In practice, this entails undermining reproductive rights, along with the freedom to choose.

"'Italy is one of the first laboratories where these anti-gender campaigns have been imagined because of the presence of the Vatican,' says researcher David Paternotte ... But Italy's anti-gender campaigns are also part of a pan-European trend and network of support"

A decade of marriage equality

Family life is changing in other ways, too. Rachael Lennon, author of Wedded Wife, celebrates a decade of same-sex marriage. She looks back on how Britain has changed for the better – while warning us never to take progress for granted.

"The Marriage (Same Sex Couples) Act marked a crucial victory in a long struggle to achieve security, dignity and pride for queer people ... But the broader struggle continues – as does the task of transforming the institution"

Generation game

Of course, we also have something for the cynics. Our poetry editor Fiona Sampson pays tribute to Philip Larkin's marvellously misanthropic take on family life, "This Be The Verse" – first published in New Humanist in 1971 – and interrogates its enduring appeal.

"'They fuck you up, your mum and dad' was speaking to an intergenerational culture war"

New columnist!

We're also pleased to introduce a brand new column from Shaparak Khorsandi! Join the acclaimed comedian, writer and humanist each issue as she reflects on life, the Universe and everything. Welcome to Shapchat!

The winter 2023 issue of New Humanist is on sale now! Subscribe here for as little as £10 a year for a digital subscription, or £27 for a print subscription.

Dolly Parton poses on a giant star

Also in the winter 2023 issue:

  • Dolly Parton on her philosophy of life
  • David M. Herszenhorn on Alexey Navalny, the reluctant dissident
  • Carmine Pariante on why the war against antidepressants is unscientific
  • Samira Ahmed on how a rediscovered painting challenges the Old Masters
  • Robin Sheeran on the struggle to desegregate Northern Ireland's schools
  • Mike Rothschild on whether the Soros dynasty can survive the succession from father to son
  • David McAllister on the controversy surrounding a new exhibition at the Tate
  • Juliet Jacques on the surprising history of British drag

Plus more fascinating features on the biggest topics shaping our world today, and all our regular columns and book reviews, original poetry, the cryptic crossword and quiz.

Subscribe to the print edition now to get a beautiful copy of the magazine delivered to your door, or choose a digital subscription to read it on the app.

New Humanist, a quarterly magazine of culture, ideas, science and philosophy, is published by the Rationalist Association, a 136-year-old charity promoting reason and free enquiry.