Saturday, July 18, 2009

How Lovely To Be A Woman

The movie A Doll’s House pointed out some important differences between feminism in 1973 and today. In 1973, women were still battling for equality in their homes and in the working world. The film shows a woman in the stereotypical housewife role, but the female lead, Nora, has conflicts with other characters that show a desire to break away from this mold. Her relationship with her husband is not typical of the housewife. She does not remain an obedient and solemn wife, but rather takes control of the house when her husband is ill and makes deals behind his back in order to have enough money. At some times, Nora is borderline malicious. She manipulates her husband and her friends into doing what she needs. Although her intentions are mostly good, her character reflects a feminist desire to stray from the norm. In the end, her decision to leave her family and find her own way in the world resonates an ideal in the 1970’s for women to be free of families and be able to provide for themselves.

The repercussion of this “ideal” in the 1970’s is hurting women of today. We have reached our goal in the working place when it comes to equal wages and numbers. In fact, it is safe to say we’re taking over! The ability to care for themselves without the help of men has caused women to stay single longer and have children later. Yet, now that they have achieved this success, they are suffering the accusations that families and children are getting left behind. In fact, the whole family structure is breaking down. Now, maybe this sounds anti-feminist. (I can hear: why can’t the dad watch the kids?) But it seems that most men are not stepping up to maternal roles and women are consequently playing mother while working a forty-hour job. Extreme feminists will forever push for more freedom for women, but at what cost?

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