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Friday, July 14, 2006

The Housewife 2

To be a housewife is one modern thing that most women are supposed to covet in this era.
This statement was proposed by one member of the mailing list I join, Sastra-Pembebasan. (Sastra = Literature, while Pembebasan = freedom). I assume that the one who proposed this idea is one member of that Islamic fundamental group. He came to this conclusion when his wife one day, some years ago, told him that she would quit working outside and pay more attention and time for the family. It happened when he and the family lived in America some years ago.

The ridiculous thing is then he considered it as the standard of being modern for women, LOL, also as the standard of happiness for women. Moreover, then he somewhat forced other women to follow his wife’s path coz he said that nowadays many American women choose to be housewife more than to be working mothers (and would “produce” naughty, unhappy, rebellious, bla bla bla children coz women would not have enough time for the children.)

If I relate it to my previous article on Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s criticism on housewife’s role promoted by the Cult of True Womanhood in the middle of the nineteenth century, this ridiculous man is left behind many centuries before. LOL.

The second wave of feminist movement in America starting in 1960s showed the tendency of most feminists to abolish the fa├žade that being a housewife was the most coveted “profession” for women. I am of opinion that this was the heritage of the cult of True Womanhood in the nineteenth century America that still covered American culture during the first half of the twentieth century. Therefore, many feminists showed their dislike for women who chose to be a housewife.

However, the post-feminisms ideology offered new things. Women have their full rights to choose what they want to do in their life—whether to pursue their own career outside home or at home. We emphasize more on the rights of women to make their own decision. When a woman chooses to be a full housewife, it must be from the woman’s decision, and not the husband’s choice, moreover the husband’s command. On the contrary, we also respect women’s decision to work outside and become financially independent.

The main point of feminisms ideology—in my opinion—is that women have full rights for their own choice for their own life: what to wear, what to do, whom to marry, what profession to have, etc. Women no longer need husbands’ permission only to do something that sometimes is only a trivial thing.

Only not confident men will not let their wives do this and that. Only not confident men will abuse the verses from their holy books—the Bible or the Alquran let’s say—to justify what they do to control women from their rights to have their own life.

PT56 12.11 140706

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