Kay S. Hymowitz of City Journal observes that author Caitlin Flanagan has kicked up quite a storm with her new book, To Hell With All That: Loving and Loathing Our Inner Housewife.
Ideological feminists hate the book. Why? As Hymowitz explains: Flanagan believes that feminism’s doctrine that “caring for children and husbands and households constitutes subservience” is at odds with women’s continued longing for domestic satisfactions. In other words, Flanagan believes that many moms love being moms and find their greatest fulfillment in motherhood.
Here is the key paragraph of Hymowitz’s article:
Children are madly attached to their mothers. Families, including men–the louts!–thrive when home life is orderly, comfortable, and good-humored. For Flanagan, women can find no easy escape from “the tensions of our times.” “What few will admit–because it is painful, because it reveals the unpleasant truth that life presents a series of choices, each of which precludes a host of other attractive possibilities–is that whatever decision a woman makes she will have lost something of incalculable value.” These days, when every seventh-grade girl knows about the joys of the office, Flanagan has set herself the thankless task of reminding us of the deeper, though more encumbered, satisfactions of life at home. The housewife, she writes, can be “harassed into the end of time yet capable of moments of transcendence, when she [is] struck by the power of her love for her children and by the importance of her sacrifice on their behalf.
Mothers are “capable of moments of transcendence” when they are struck by the power of their love and the importance of their sacrifice? Who knew? We all know. Just watch a mom at work. Such is the wonder of motherhood.