It seems as though Betty Friedan’s view and overall contentions contributed to the strife that is seen and described in the two following blogs. It is her idea that women should have something more to live for, in conjunction with the fact that she doesn’t even consider the possiblility that the husband to these housewives should do any work. This seems shortsighted and lacking in one of the biggest aspects that made feminism, at that time, what it was.
Ehrenreich and Hondagneu-Sotelo take on the view that housework is essentially work that is done in a house, and so those who live in the house should take on part of that work. At times, Hondagneu-Sotelo seems to shun the idea that there should be maids at all. I find Ehrenreich’s argument that house work is left for those with “Nothing better to do” as opposed to the more affluent people who have “something better to do” with their time is, to a level, insulting. The housekeepers that Ehrenreich refers to are commonly immigrants who have little to no higher education, or English speaking skills. I have been lucky enough to be able to pursue higher education, effectively, that means, that it is more worth my time to pay someone, for whom this may be one of the few chances at job, than it would be for me to be doing that same work. I do have something better to do with my time, but that housekeeper needs a job, and I can give her one, so essentially, it is worth her time far more than it is worth mine.
However, the ability to work to a higher goal is one that all people should get as much help with as possible in achieving that. This should start with the housekeeper getting the respect and dignity that everyone “affluent” expects. This respect and value will go a long way in improving the conditions of workers, as their view of themselves in this society will change, and more opportunities will be taken.
This should be a political issue, as house keeping is a legitimate job, and the workers should be protected the same way workers in all parts of society are protected. This is the first step in promoting respect for those in this field.