Friday, May 2, 2014

1950s Kitchen Quote of the Week: Betty Friedan

"Each suburban wife struggles with it alone. As she made the beds, shopped for groceries, matched slipcover material, ate peanut butter sandwiches with her children, chauffeured Cub Scouts and Brownies, lay beside her husband at night-–she was afraid to ask even of herself the silent question-–'Is this all?'” 

― Betty Friedan, The Feminine Mystique (1963)

Even though her groundbreaking work was published in 1963, Friedan was looking to the post-war, baby-boomer mother and 1950s housewife for her evaluations on the state of women in America. While some women surely found fulfillment at home, and many still do, it was the "Is this all?" question that would change the way women and men interacted in the home and workplace in the decades to come.

[Here is an article in The New York Times about the book's 50th anniversary: click here.]


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