Housewives on TV: You've Come a Long Way, Baby

"The return of the housewife issue with a vengeance does suggest that there's been a new twist in feminism," she said. "Women who want to have children and want to have a career are in a very difficult tug of war. There have been so many reports of young, college-age and 20-something women who are more troubled about the choices they're going to have to make than the gung-ho women of the baby-boom generation who saw their career as their identity."

"No matter what a woman does, she has to defend it," she added. "If she's a stay-at-home mom she has to defend it, if she's a working mom she has to defend it. It's a charged area, and I don't see any resolution to it soon."

Which means, according to Paglia, that TV shows about women and the choices they make about their jobs and families will continue to thrive. She just wishes they could get that wretched old word out of their titles.

"'Housewife.' It's absolutely archaic," she said. "It descends from a period when a woman and home were fused and there were no options of any other kind. It comes from a time when as a woman, either you were a nun or a spinster or a housewife. There should be a national word search for something new."

Househottie, anyone?

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