Retalls (17.3.19)

Why Woman Sexual Liberation Came at a Price. Rosie Boycott. Financial Times

My mother was fond of saying she had “loved the war”. She worked, she was wanted, and I know she threw caution to the wind when it came to relationships with young soldiers and airmen who might not return home. But come the end, she was back in the kitchen, the jobs were only for men, and women were expected to pick up everything else. (...) The postwar world, while promising so much, delivered less than zero to women. Sex was taboo, unwed mothers were shunned, contraception only available if you were married, and premarital sex was for sluts. Between the war and the early 1960s, women grew smaller, dropping three or four dress sizes, according to department store buyers; 30 per cent dyed their hair blonde. It must have been a nightmare. (....) Like every woman she knew, my mother was tied by economic strings to my father. It was not just the question of pay — even as late as 1970 women’s earnings were just 54 per cent of men’s — but also because she would have needed his signature to do anything. A woman could not rent a car or a television, and forget about your own mortgage (…)