The Feminine Mystique By Betty Friedan

2032 Words9 Pages
In the book The Feminine Mystique, Betty Friedan brings attention to what she calls the feminine mystique, or “the problem that has no name”. Through the use of anecdotal narratives, her own personal experiences as a journalist, editor, mother, and the interviews of many women from different backgrounds in order to unveil the truth about the women of the 1950’s. The problem which sparked the second wave of feminism in the United States is one that focuses on the inequality between men and women and the undervaluing of women in both the social and private spheres. The women of the time gave up pursuing their passions, such as getting an education or careers in science or business in order to fit the image of the stereotypical stay-at-home mom whose main goal in life is to raise her children while providing a safe and comforting home for her husband. The Feminine Mystique, as she called it, was the idea of widespread unhappiness of women, despite the preconceived notion that women were happiest when they have a family. Throughout her work, she dives into many of the problems associated with the feminine mystique and builds a powerful concept of what would eventually be labeled feminism.
Friedan begins by pointing out how during the 1950’s the average age of women when they married was getting younger and younger, and how birthrates among these women were increasing. One would believe that this would lead to an increase of happiness because the general population of men
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