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1 Burnside Feminist Studies- Family

The Meaning of Wife

by

The Meaning of Wife Cover

ISBN13: 9780374205102
ISBN10: 0374205108
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

"One part The Beauty Myth . . . and one part Backlash"*--a provocative exploration of who and what a wife really is.

There is a wife crisis in North America, a brewing storm of conflicting forces swirling around what it means to be a wife at the beginning of the 21st Century. The word is so fraught with ambiguity that it has become a litmus test, eliciting from women emotions ranging from longing to antipathy, anxiety to derision. This crisis is at the heart of Anne Kingston's The Meaning of Wife.

Delving into the complex, troubling, and sometimes humorous contradictions, illusions, and realities of contemporary wifehood, Kingston takes the reader on a fascinating journey into the wedding industrial complex, which elevates the bride to a potent consumer icon; through the recent romanticization of domesticity; and across the conflicted terrain of wifely sexuality. She looks at "wife backlash," and the new wave of neo-traditionalism that urges women to marry before their "best-before" dates expire; explores the apotheosis of abused wives and the strange celebration of wives who kill; and muses on the fact that Oprah Winfrey and Martha Stewart, two of the world's wealthiest and most influential women, are both non-wives whose success has hinged on thier understanding of wives. The result is an entertaining mix of social, sexual, historical, and economic commentary that is bound to stir debate even as it reframes our view of both women and marriage.

Review:

"Despite its occasionally academic tone, this encyclopedic examination of wifedom should trump wedding magazines on the list of required reading for prospective brides. Canadian journalist Kingston's behind-the-scenes tour of not-always-holy matrimony begins with a visit to the inner sanctum of Vera Wang's exclusive Madison Avenue bridal boutique and ends with an analysis of how much a wife is worth in economic terms. Along the way, she shines her spotlight on the bedroom, several real-world first wives' clubs, Carrie Bradshaw's single-girl lair and the worlds of women who have killed or maimed abusive husbands. (Naturally, Lorena Bobbitt figures prominently.) While Kingston writes, 'For all the crowing that marriage is in crisis, the institution still remains the preferred way to cement love,' she also notes that a 'strong marriage is an advantageous incubator in which to raise children' and 'a source of varying degrees of economic support,' and some readers might wonder if they're romantic fools for wondering how true love factors into the equation. But Kingston asks some important questions — How does marriage affect a woman's sense of self? Is it possible to place a dollar value on a mother's work? How is our idea of the wife shaped over the decades? — and challenges a new generation of brides to come up with their own creative answers. Agent, Bruce Westwood. (Mar.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Synopsis:

Delving into the complex, troubling, and sometimes humorous contradictions, illusions, and realities of contemporary wifehood, Kingston offers an entertaining mix of social, sexual, historical, and economic commentary that is bound to stir debate even as it reframes the modern view of both women and marriage.

Synopsis:

Delving into the complex, troubling, and sometimes humorous contradictions, illusions, and realities of contemporary wifehood, this book takes the reader on a journey into the wedding industrial complex. Anne Kingston looks at "wife backlash," and the new wave of neo-traditionalism that urges women to marry young; explores the apotheosis of abused wives and the strange celebration of wives who kill; and muses on the fact that Oprah Winfrey and Martha Stewart, two of the world's wealthiest and most influential women, are both unmarried. The result is an entertaining mix of social, sexual, historical, and economic commentary that is bound to stir debate even as it reframes our view of both women and marriage.

About the Author

Anne Kingston's writing has appeared in The Globe and Mail, Saturday Night, Toronto Life, and The Chicago Sun-Times Magazine. She is a columnist for the National Post, where she writes on social and cultural issues.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

Tooky, May 24, 2006 (view all comments by Tooky)
The book is good but quite slow and very detailed about the role of the wife over the past 150 years. It was not a page turner that I could not put down, but I did learn a lot of stuff I did not know. The book is well researched. Interesting for anyone who is contemplating a big wedding in the near future, it may alter your opinions. The role of big industries in the wedding was eye-opening. I would recommend this book to females, males may not find it as interesting
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(19 of 36 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374205102
Subtitle:
A Provocative Look at Women and Marriage in the Twenty-first Century
Author:
Kingston, Anne
Publisher:
Picador
Subject:
Women
Subject:
Women's Studies
Subject:
Sociology - Marriage & Family
Subject:
Identity
Subject:
Women's Studies - General
Subject:
Sociology | Marriage
Subject:
Family
Edition Description:
Us
Publication Date:
20060321
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
8.26 x 5.58 x 0.8 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Feminist Studies » Family
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Womens Studies

The Meaning of Wife Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$3.50 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374205102 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Despite its occasionally academic tone, this encyclopedic examination of wifedom should trump wedding magazines on the list of required reading for prospective brides. Canadian journalist Kingston's behind-the-scenes tour of not-always-holy matrimony begins with a visit to the inner sanctum of Vera Wang's exclusive Madison Avenue bridal boutique and ends with an analysis of how much a wife is worth in economic terms. Along the way, she shines her spotlight on the bedroom, several real-world first wives' clubs, Carrie Bradshaw's single-girl lair and the worlds of women who have killed or maimed abusive husbands. (Naturally, Lorena Bobbitt figures prominently.) While Kingston writes, 'For all the crowing that marriage is in crisis, the institution still remains the preferred way to cement love,' she also notes that a 'strong marriage is an advantageous incubator in which to raise children' and 'a source of varying degrees of economic support,' and some readers might wonder if they're romantic fools for wondering how true love factors into the equation. But Kingston asks some important questions — How does marriage affect a woman's sense of self? Is it possible to place a dollar value on a mother's work? How is our idea of the wife shaped over the decades? — and challenges a new generation of brides to come up with their own creative answers. Agent, Bruce Westwood. (Mar.)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Synopsis" by , Delving into the complex, troubling, and sometimes humorous contradictions, illusions, and realities of contemporary wifehood, Kingston offers an entertaining mix of social, sexual, historical, and economic commentary that is bound to stir debate even as it reframes the modern view of both women and marriage.
"Synopsis" by ,
Delving into the complex, troubling, and sometimes humorous contradictions, illusions, and realities of contemporary wifehood, this book takes the reader on a journey into the wedding industrial complex. Anne Kingston looks at "wife backlash," and the new wave of neo-traditionalism that urges women to marry young; explores the apotheosis of abused wives and the strange celebration of wives who kill; and muses on the fact that Oprah Winfrey and Martha Stewart, two of the world's wealthiest and most influential women, are both unmarried. The result is an entertaining mix of social, sexual, historical, and economic commentary that is bound to stir debate even as it reframes our view of both women and marriage.

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