CRTF #3 The Stereotypical Housewife

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  • The Stereotypical Housewife:
    • Theories such as the functionalist Parson's believes that the women's place is in the home. There are a variety of explanations as to how and why the housewife roles has developed
    • Oakley 1974 Feminist
      • This was when married women  were often not allowed to work in factories, thus a new role had to be created for them
      • Although women had previously been part of the workforce (such as the cottage industry) they were now excluded from the work place and confined to the home, where they had responsibility for childcare and housework.
      • Oakley believed that although more women began to work throughout the 20th century, the world of the housewife is still a women's primary role
      • Believes that the role of the housewife has been socially constructed; it was sown to the industrial revolution
      • Women who do work are concentrated into low-paid jobs are often extensions of the housewife role i.e. nursing or childcare
    • Functionalists Parson's
      • Husbands have an instrumental role I which they achieve success at work becoming the "breadwinner" and providing financial support for his family
      • The wife has an expressive role whereby she is responsible for primary socialisation of the children taking care of the emotional needs of the family in the role of the homemaker and housewife
      • There is a clear division of labour between the spouses
      • According to Parsons the division of labour is based on biological differences, women are suited to nurturing and men are suited to providing
      • The family role of husbands and wives are segregated (separate) from one another
      • He further claimed that this division of labour was beneficial to men, women, children and wider society, a view shared to be many New Right and Conservative Politicians


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