In what ways did the media image of women in the 1950's not reflect reality for many women? What images did advertisers promote?
this question is from a unit called decades of change, dealing with cold war
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In an interesting irony, post World War II America appeared on the surface to offer something for everyone; education for returning GI's, record economic growth, low unemployment and inflation, new highways and schools, new access to a whole new bevy of consumer products and lots of available credit wih which to buy them. However, even as everything around them was expanding and "booming", American women were in some ways being constricted more tightly than ever. The growth of the suburbs meant access to new, suburban tract houses for a whole new class of people, and the media promoted homemaking/child-rearing/June Cleaver-esque values. Books and articles extolled the virtues of marriage, children, cooking and cleaning, leading Betty Friedan to write in 1963 in The Feminine Mystique that the suburbs were "burying women alive". In a rare interview, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis mentioned this phenomenon as she discussed her decision to work in editing, although she hardly needed money, saying that it was somewhat disheartening for women of her generation to have had so few opportunities to use their talents and skills.
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