The Feminine Mystique Form and Content (Literary Essentials: Nonfiction Masterpieces)

Betty Friedan

Form and Content

(Literary Essentials: Nonfiction Masterpieces)

The year 1963 was an unusually significant one for American women: President John F. Kennedy’s Commission on the Status of Women reported its findings, after two years of extensive research and debate; Congress finally passed the Equal Pay Act, assuring women equal pay for equal work, at least in the jobs under its jurisdiction; and Betty Friedan published The Feminine Mystique, a ground-breaking book which challenged all the conventional notions of women’s place in society as it was commonly understood in the post-World War II era.

In The Feminine Mystique, Friedan seeks to answer two fundamental questions. First, why was it that women—who had struggled so hard for educational and career...

(The entire section is 837 words.)