“Mad Men”, “Working Girls” & Depressed Housewives: The 1960’s & The Feminine Mystique
Coontz will draw in this talk on her newest book, A Strange Stirring: The Feminine Mystique and American Women at the Dawn of the 1960s, to describe how housewives and “perky gal typists” were catalyzed by Betty Friedan’s 1963 bestseller to change their lives.
“Based on exhaustive research and interviews, and challenging both conservative and liberal myths about Friedan, A Strange Stirring brilliantly illuminates how a generation of women came to realize that their dissatisfaction with domestic life didn’t reflect their personal weakness but rather a social and political injustice.” (Amazon.com) Coontz teaches history and family studies at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, and is Director of Research and Public Education for the Council on Contemporary Families. A sought-after commentator on family life in the U.S., Coontz’s research has been featured on the Today Show, Oprah Winfrey, Crossfire, and NPR, and her articles and op-eds have appeared in the New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and Newsweek.
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