The Business of Being a Woman

I was a bit curious as to how women handled business in the 19th century and I found the clip below from “The Business of Being a Woman” by Ida M. Tarbell published in 1912. Ms. Tarbell begins bluntly speaking about women of her day and how they sought more out of life than their business of home and hearth as well as the inevitable outcome of such choices. She refers to this woman as the “Uneasy Woman.” I found it quite entertaining as I think about the woman of today and the shun of even being a homemaker. Ms. Tarbell further states,“The Uneasy Woman driven by the thirst for greater freedom and believing man’s way of life will assuage it lays siege to his kingdom. Some of the unexpected loot she has carried away still embarrasses her. Not a little however is of such undeniable advantage that she may fairly contend that its capture alone justifies her campaign.”

How fascinating to see the discontent that women have faced with being a business woman of the home. Ms. Tarbell further says, “She was dissatisfied with the way her brain was being trained her time employed her influence directed, ‘Give us the man’s way was her demand then we shall understand real things can fill our days with important tasks will count as human beings.'” 

Today, many women are born independent and have no idea where this “way of thinking” all began. Women did have a business at home and, even today, the business at home is time consuming and nowhere near discontenting when Christ is the center of this sense of servitude. I can see how one would become bored if she had nothing at all to do at home; however, making a dwelling place a home, a place of peace and serenity requires a boatload of work within itself.

 Ms. Tarbell further states in her book, “Embroiled as man is in an eternal effort to conquer understand and reduce to order both nature and his fellows it is imperative that he have some secure spot where his head is not in danger his heart is not harassed Woman by virtue of the business nature assigns her has always been theoretically the maker and keeper of this necessary place of peace But she has rarely made it and kept it with full content Eve was a revoltee so was Medea In every century they have appeared restless Amazons protesting and remolding. Out of their uneasy souls have come the varying changes in the woman’s world which distinguish the ages ”

Enough said.

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