Housewife: Why Women Still Do It All and What to Do Instead
By Lisa Selin Davis
Legacy Lit, 320 pages, $30

Over the past two centuries, women have sought and attained equal social, legal, and political status. Detractors have opposed these developments every step of the way but for the most part failed to stop the advance of sexual egalitarianism. Nonetheless, new strains of dissenting feminism as well as full-blown anti-feminism have recently been on the rise. Even ideas like withdrawing women’s right to vote are receiving a fresh hearing. This backlash is symptomatic of a dissatisfaction with the results of feminism among men and women alike. 

The journalist Lisa Selin Davis has now entered this fraught conversation with the book Housewife. Unlike other critics of contemporary feminism, from “reactionary feminists” to anti-feminists, Davis takes the view that the full range of women’s aspirations, from career mom to “tradwife,” are all equally valid. She turns her criticisms against the state policies that ensure women will face immense obstacles regardless of the path they choose. The problem isn’t men’s continued domination, or women being unable to decide what they want. Rather, Davis argues, it is the lack of sex-specific social support, which makes real choices impossible.

Get the best of Compact right in your inbox.

Sign up for our free newsletter today.

Great! Check your inbox and click the link.
Sorry, something went wrong. Please try again.