Sex equality in 1950s Britain Nicked this off the Mandrill Press blog. (Well, why not? I wrote it). Sex equality in 1950s Britain Share this:TwitterFacebookEmailLinkedInLike this:Like Loading... Related ← Download a free audiobook sample from A Just and Upright Man ‘A powerful, unrelenting page-turner. Highly recommended.’ →
The link doesn’t work for me 🙁
Sorry, Jane — see if it’s any better now (and thanks for the tipoff).
The link works now but it’s very difficult to read. I get a great band with a Mandrill logo, and the text scrolls down in a box about two inches deep. I can’t get the beginning into the window either.
I’m going to have to find a way to fix how posts present themselves. Thanks for pointing this out.
Thanks for pointing out the problem, Jane. Turns out it was something called a sticky header which I have now turned off — I think that makes it easier to read, though I may also need to increase the font size.
My memories start at the back end of the sixties and they aren’t much like the world you describe. I remember everybody’s mother working and girls getting a fair crack of the whip at school and university. But I didn’t go to a typical primary school, nor secondary school, and as far as I remember there were no gender expectations. My family was funny that way too 🙂
I know things weren’t the same for everyone, and my mother worked, too, but I do recognise the world Kat describes. In the street where I grew up, two families — each within 100 metres of our house — had daughters who were routinely discriminated against for no reason except that they weren’t boys. Even three decades later, in the 1980s, my daughter — who had maintained as a small child that she wanted to be a doctor — came home from her first day at a new school and said she was going to be a nurse. I said, “What happened to being a doctor?” and she said, “Boys become doctors. Girls become nurses.” She started at a new school the following Monday; it cost me serious money and it was worth every penny. As it happens, she IS a nurse — something called a practice nurse in a large hospital — and she gets great satisfaction out of the work but she does it because that’s what she wanted to do and not because some Shropshire oik told her you can’t be a doctor if you don’t have testicles.
That’s the kind of thing we were expressly told wasn’t going to happen. The school encouraged girls and boys in exactly the same direction, but I think the families did too. I see it with the Chinese families here. They might come from a strict patriarchal culture, but being an immigrant seems to concentrate the mind wonderfully on what is the most sensible course. The girls usually get more education than the boys (who will do the heavy duty manual stuff in the business) because they’ll be the lawyers and management experts.
Sounds like the right kind of school. Which would also describe the one we sent our daughter to after she’d come home with her story about the limits on what a girl could achieve. And the one we later sent our son to, though in his case we simply wanted him to have what I’d had at grammar school — but if you want that in the UK now you either have to be very lucky in where you live (we weren’t) or you have to pay for it.