A Woman's Work

These are some shots I took from a display at the Powerhouse Museum in Sydney. I have been there a couple of times before and was glad to see that this display was still there. I love this display because it reminds me so much of my other Nanna's house. Looking at it is almost a step back in time for me. It reminds me of a time when things were so simple. I look at these photos and think about the women who spent many hours in these types of kitchens.

Meal preparation and cleaning was a big part of their day. There were no microwave ovens or online pizza ordering.

Depending on which source you read, some women fought to escape from the prison of the home. They longed for a life that recognised them as individuals and beings that were capable of so much more than being "just" a mother and housekeeper.

I love that here I am in the 21st century at the age of 36 and already have had two professional careers ( lawyer and school teacher). I love that the above picture of me captures the present and the past. I love that I here I am with the world as my oyster knowing that I can do and be anything I want to be .... and yet, I write a blog justifying my choice to be "just" a mother and "just" a housekeeper.
...... I wonder what the 1940s woman would have thought of me................


Unknown said...

She would probably have been as jealous as hell that you had the choice to be who you are because you made that choice. That every day you could choose to be a new age woman or a traditional woman - and no man told you which to be - she would also have laughed that while you have the best of all possible worlds you are still justifying!!!

But most of all she would have been proud that her hard work and common sense have made a big impression on future generations that her work and time in her home is valued and appeciated, and that you have taken up the challenge to be all you can be - because you can.


Kadeeae said...

Found your blog down a very twisty path and via much meandering from Margaret's Ramblings (blog)...still not sure exactly 'how' I ended up here, lol. Have had a run through some of your posts (not enough time in the day I'm afraid) and am subscribing - such a lovely place to visit :-)

Loved the photos in this post, I so enjoy visiting museums or attractions that have a "yesteryear" exhibit . . .

Will be following (REALLY don't like that term, lol) you on Twitter too - I'm "Wazzat" on there.

Joanne said...

Was it ever about being a mother or a housekeeper? Or was it (and is it still) about respect. I'm guessing that there were always women who were valued and shown appreciation for their role in the family and who were quite happy in that role. But of course if you are taken for granted and treated like a drudge, its not much of a life.
Also, time saving devices have given women and men the opportunity to pursue some of their other interests, aside from just making a living or keeping house.
To me, its about self-respect and hopefully earning the respect of others, regardless of whether you work outside the home or not.
BTW, those photographs of the 'old' kitchen are lovely! We have a 1950's working-person's house recreated inside our local Wool Museum and the one thing that stands out is how tiny it is! The bedrooms, living area and kitchen are all so small. Incredible to think that 6 or 7 children may have grown up together in a house like that.

Linda [Forever Champagne] said...

First time visit to your blog...well worth it.

All the best,

Anonymous said...

I agree with saisymum - she would have been jealous that you had a choice and that you had experienced other occupations so that you can now truly appreciate being '"just" a mother and housekeeper'


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