“Housewife” Author Talk with Lisa Selin Davis

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Program Description:

As we celebrate Women’s History Month, PBS Books National Director Heather-Marie Montilla is joined by journalist and author Lisa Selin Davis to chat about her latest book Housewife: Why Women Still Do It All and What To Do Instead. Lisa tackles the “myth” of the divide between breadwinners and homemakers. Examining working-women throughout history, Lisa provides the roadmap for women to be empowered to choose the best path for themselves as they navigate balance in modern-day society. 

"Housewife" by Lisa Selin Davis book cover

Book Description:

The notion of “housewife” evokes strong reactions. For some, it’s nostalgia for a bygone era, simpler and better times when men were breadwinners and women remained home with the kids. For others, it’s a sexist, oppressive stereotype of women’s work. Either way, housewife is a long outdated concept—or is it?

Lisa Selin Davis, known for her smart, viral, feminist, cultural takes, argues that the “breadwinner vs. homemaker” divide is a myth. She charts examples from prehistoric female hunters to working class housewives in the 1930s, from First Ladies to 21st century stay-at-home moms, on a search for answers to the problems of what is referred to as women’s work and motherhood. Davis discovers that women have been sold a lie about what families should be. Housewife unveils a truth: interdependence, rather than independence, is the American way.

The book is a clarion call for all women—married or single, mothers or childless—and for men, too, to push for liberation. In Housewife, Davis builds a case for systemic, cultural, and personal change, to encourage women to have the power to choose the best path for themselves.

Guest Biography:

Lisa Selin Davis, Author

Lisa Selin Davis is a critically-acclaimed essayist and journalist whose work has appeared in major publications, include the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Time, The Free Press, and many others. She is the author of Tomboy, as well as two novels. She lives in New York City with her family.

Visit her website: https://www.lisaselindavis.com/

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