Study: "high school seniors' thinking about a husband's authority and divisions of labor at home has since become substantially more traditional."

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josh p's picture

Pretty interesting results. It really doesn't surprise me that much though. I think that a lot of young people are reacting to, or are  at least wary of, the radical feminism of recent years. Call it common grace or common sense it seems like many people inherently understand at least some rough approximation of Biblical marriage.  

Aaron Blumer's picture


It's surprising to me. The group that conducted the survey doesn't seem to have been expecting it, so it's apparently not a case of surveyor-bias. Maybe that generation is just not drinking the Koolaid ... that is now being blasted at them at fire hose velocity. That alone might explain it. At that age, you tend to reject--or at least seriously question--whatever is being mostly loudly insisted upon. 

JBL's picture

The first wave and early second wave of feminism revolved around granting equal civil rights (suffrage, property ownership) and relaxation of social strictures to allow women more freedom of determination for their lives.  Thus prompted the entering of women (especially married ones) into the workforce and into traditionally male careers.

These waves of feminism did not seek as much to overturn the established patriarchal systems as much as reform them.  

Late second wave feminism was much more militant against the established patriarchal systems, and became much more antagonistic against traditionalism.  For those embracing late second wave feminist thinking, traditional homemaking was considered degrading and limiting.  Traditional female roles became shunned and rejected for a large percentage of a generation (80s-90s) of women due to the opprobrium that was directed at them.

The irony of the situation is that the new social pressure to have a career was just as limiting as the old pressure to "just be" a wife and mom.  I would argue that the results of the survey reflect that younger generations are finding a balance of philosophy that allows them the most freedom in life path determination.

John B. Lee

Bert Perry's picture

I think the question I pose above has a lot to do with what's going on. Today's kids are now the third generation to experience "easy divorce" and the integration of feminist theory into mass politics, and they simply don't like what they see.  Mom and Dad are increasingly not together, Dad is having a huge problem finding a decent job and may have lapsed into depression because family and work life isn't there (suicide rates among white men are huge, especially single white men), and more.  It's no wonder smart young people are considering another model--the question is whether it will be a fad, or whether it will stick.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Aaron Blumer's picture


I would argue that the results of the survey reflect that younger generations are finding a balance of philosophy that allows them the most freedom in life path determination.

I was having a conversation with my mother about this not long ago. She was a full time home maker until we all grew up and left home and then Dad died. There is not really a "home" in the same sense now, but she'd still be a full time home maker if there was. So we were talking about how things have changed and she was observing that many of our social problems are due to the lack of full time moms.

I tried to summarize my own view on that. When we look at Scripture we find women mostly in home and family centered roles, but with a few fairly dramatic exceptions. Looking at western history on this as well, I'm inclined to say that the ideal is a society where women are free to be traditional homemakers but also free to be exceptional. The cultural assumption we used to have was that "women belong in the home." The cultural assumption now is "women belong in careers." Both of these assumptions are wrong, though I think the latter does more damage than the former.

Mom's theory on how we got here was that it was mainly WWII, when so many men went off to war and women went to the factories. Soon it became economically necessary for many more women to earn wages. There seems to be something to that.

Joeb's picture

My wife wanted to be a homemaker right after we got married.  I wanted her to work a little bit $$$$. I lost.  Four kids latter with three still at home my wife is still a homemaker and manages all the money. She sees that as her role and getting me the heck out of the house. Of course Bert you can understand that since experiencing some of my wackiness. 

My wife always saw this as her role to serve the Lord by being a homemaker.  My daughter knows the Lord and seems to be following the same model. 

To her credit she has been dating and did not take any crap from the any so-called Christians she dated.  When one got out line and wanted her to roll on the hay she dumped him real quick and did not need a putrid Gothard purity ring to do it.  Smart gal like her mom.  She used her head and love for the Lord to do things right. 

Now she is engaged to a fine Christian Chinese man. Also an eight year marine and worked his way through college and law school. His parents don't speak English so the wedding should be interesting.  This young man grew up in Communist China and is an only child due to the one child Policy in China.  His family went to Hong Kong then to NJ.  His dad had a United Kingdom Passport so he could have settled in Europe.  

Anyway his mother was forced to have two abortions ie prochoice government style. So any children from this marriage will not only be a real blessing to me but especially to my future     soninlaw's parents. 

Bert in the Asian culture the youth greatly revere their elders. Bert I'm getting some great gifts out of this deal.When he asked for my daughter's hand in marriage it was very formal.  He told me how wonderful I was and my wife was for rasing such a wonderful daughter.  Bert I had to bite my lip when he was talking about me because it was all my wonderful wife. After he got done I said absolutely and shook his hand and let's seal the deal with a beer. Two cans of real cold Yuengling Lager did the trick.  

Note   For any Pastors who are still holding the Gothard purity ring banquets for the young gals and daddy shame on you.