What should women be doing in the 21C? Should they avoid traditional places like kitchens and laundries? Will women ever throw off the yoke of male exploitation, whilst they still nurture their families via domestic duties? Will the gender pay divide ever be fixed if women still do all this extra unpaid work at home? Is it the way we bring up our kids that prevents us from truly moving forward as a race of human beings? Traditions, customs and religious beliefs are all rooted in the past, an unfair and, often, misogynistic past. 21C women and the kitchen conundrum – is it a serious problem?
Society & the Role of Women in the West
Access to education has meant that girls go to school and university in the west. They grow up with ambitions beyond cooking, cleaning and caring for husband and family. Cultural expectations in the modern world include career opportunities for women and they can choose to balance this with whatever degree of family life they opt for. Still, many women find themselves shouldering an unfair share of domestic duties in the family home, as husbands find excuses to dodge the load. Change takes time to take effect within communities and adherence to outdated beliefs drag the chain, even, further.
A Robot Called Sue
Redesigning roles in the 21C may call for more drastic action, with women being banned from the kitchen by politically correct campaigns for cultural change in the home. Alternatively, we may be saved by automation taking over all domestic roles in the home. Will your home robot have a male or female voice I wonder? Greater ethical considerations will permeate our lives at every level, as time marches on in this new century, I posit. Technology may deliver us from evil, our animal evil, but may create new unimagined dilemmas for an unimagined future.
A Brave New World Beckons
21C women and the kitchen conundrum may see young women in the future fighting for the chance to go back into the kitchen. Wanting to rediscover their nurturing natures after decades of corporate hard-line behaviour. Fantasies about the lives their grandmothers used to lead. Automated homes and cars leave human being pushing buttons on touch screens. Will we lose the sensory ability to touch and feel, as we refrain from interacting with organic matter in favour of digital screens? A brave new world beckons for women in the 21C.