Friday, April 12, 2013

I Choose My Choice

"Still, as a wave of educated, middle-class Americans becomes focused on sewing non-sweatshop curtains and pureeing non-GMO baby food for their own families, they are increasingly uninterested in pursuing large-scale collective solutions to the very problems that drove them to become modern homesteaders in the first place. These droves of radical post-consumerist home-ec enthusiasts may believe that change begins in the home, but for them it also ends there. Matchar cites economist Juliet Schor’s prediction that the new economy will be a 'synthesis of the pre- and post-modern,' affording every worker the ability to choose whether and when to work either in or outside the system. If educated middle-class workers aren’t rallying for better health care and paid sick days within the system, what hope do minimum-wage workers have? If wealthier moms are judging each other for shopping at Trader Joe’s, who’s holding down the fresh produce prices for lower-income families? It’s easy to see how the new domesticity, born of inequality and economic hardship and professional dissatisfaction, will only exacerbate those trends for workers further down the food chain, leaving them struggling to opt in to the economy at all."

Ann Friedman in The New Republic reviews Emily Matchar's Homeward Bound: Why Women Are Embracing the New Domesticity.

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