A Strange Stirring: The Feminine Mystique & American Women by Stephanie Coontz PDF

By Stephanie Coontz

ISBN-10: 0465022324

ISBN-13: 9780465022328

In 1963, Betty Friedan unleashed a hurricane of controversy together with her bestselling publication, The female Mystique. thousands of girls wrote to her to assert that the publication had reworked, even kept, their lives. approximately part a century later, many ladies nonetheless bear in mind the place they have been once they first learn it.

In A unusual Stirring, historian Stephanie Coontz examines the sunrise of the Nineteen Sixties, whilst the sexual revolution had slightly began, newspapers marketed for "perky, beautiful gal typists," yet married ladies have been informed to stick domestic, and husbands managed virtually each element of family members lifestyles.

Based on exhaustive study and interviews, and demanding either conservative and liberal myths approximately Friedan, A unusual Stirring brilliantly illuminates how a new release of ladies got here to achieve that their dissatisfaction with family existence didn't mirror their own weak spot yet fairly a social and political injustice.

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Additional info for A Strange Stirring: The Feminine Mystique & American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s

Sample text

In 1962, the Saturday Evening Post was still assuring readers that few housewives even daydreamed about any life other than that of a full-time homemaker, and that their occasional “blue” moods could easily be assuaged by a few words of praise for their cooking or their new hairdo. Yet for those who cared to look, Friedan pointed out, signs of trouble had been clear for some time. ” had fretted about why the American woman was “dissatisfied with a lot that women of other lands can only dream of,” as one journalist mused in the March 7, 1960, issue of Newsweek.

Although advice books often emphasized the tremendous intellectual effort required to manage household chores, the expectations for housewives’ intelligence were pretty low. Many newspapers had columns such as the Washington Post’s “Anne’s Readers’ Exchange,” where women sent in helpful hints about organizing housework more efficiently. ” As late as 1969, famed parenting advice author Dr. ” Even well-educated women who themselves worked outside the home joined the chorus. ” Frances Perkins, who had been secretary of labor for twelve years under Franklin D.

One company atypically sought a “career minded college educated” candidate for an executive secretary but specified that she must be single. ” The male section included 281 ads for accountants and 153 for chemists, while the female section had just 9 ads in each of those job categories. Eleven ads sought men for attorney positions, but none sought women. ” The “Help Wanted/Male” section had 94 ads for management trainee positions, while only 2 such ads appeared in the women’s job section. On the other hand, the female section of the want ads contained 162 ads for gal Fridays and girl Fridays, 459 for secretaries, 159 for receptionists, 9 9780465002009-text_coontz 10/18/10 9:11 AM Page 10 A Strange Stirring and 122 for typists.

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A Strange Stirring: The Feminine Mystique & American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s by Stephanie Coontz


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