Wednesday July 15

Modern Wife, Modern Life

How much?

What is interesting about ‘Modern Wife, Modern Life,’ an exhibition of women’s magazines in 1960s Ireland, is that while it seems to glance quickly over the eucharistic nature of advertisements in the magazines – one ad for example conflates a dishwasher with personal freedom: ‘She was condemned to 9 years hard labour!…until HOOVER took over!…HOW TO BUY A YEAR OF LEISURE FOR TEN GUINEAS’ – it goes at times to some length to point out that ads do not live up to their promise. This is taking them at face value, and is irrelevant: it seems clear to me, as it must have done to the readers of titles such as Woman’s Way and Woman’s View, that while ten guineas might not actually have bought a year of leisure – forget personal freedom – it might at least have afforded them to do something other than washing dishes. / Olen Bajarias