Reading Log 5 “Why I Want a Wife”
“I Want a Wife” was written by Judy Brady in 1970. Brady’s text gives a list of the duties and responsibilities of the stereotypical housewife from the chauvinistic view of a 1970’s husband. She runs into a recently divorced male friend who is looking for another wife. It is funny to me that her thoughts about why she would want a wife comes to her while ironing. Brady goes on to describe in a role reversed way the reasons she would enjoy having a wife. The wife Brady seeks is one that would be one-hundred percent invested in taking care of the husband’s wants and needs, including but not limited to, keeping the house clean, preparing meals, doing the laundry, taking care of the children and satisfying his sexual needs to name a few. She seemingly covers all the bases of the “perfect” wife. One would assume that this piece was written as complete satire.
Brady was spurred to write her essay after meeting her divorced male friend and then thinking of what was expected of wives in the seventies. She convincingly showed how ridiculous the expectations of wives were. Brady pointed out the seemingly endless demands that husbands expected from the perfect wife. Although some of her points may be a bit exaggerated, she hit the nail on the head for the most part. Her big picture message was to paint a picture of wives as a tool for men and bring the issue of women’s rights to light.