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From Superwomen to Domestic Goddesses

The Rise and Fall of Feminism

Natasha Campo

The book was awarded the W. K. Hancock Prize of the Australian Historical Association in 2010.
Why are women turning their back on feminism? This book examines the rise and fall of feminism in the public imagination in the last twenty years, and explains why ‘feminism failed me’ has become the catch-cry of a generation. Today many women feel betrayed by the promises of feminism and are looking for liberation through ‘raunch culture’ or as ‘yummy mummies’ and ‘domestic goddesses’. Yet during the 1980s the popular ideal of the ‘Superwoman’ offered a source of empowerment and pride for women and equality with men – even ‘having it all’ – seemed possible. Through a close reading of popular culture sources, this book shows how women’s engagement with feminism has shifted over time, and considers its future as a social movement.
Contents: Having it All? Remembering Feminism – ‘Why Work Makes Women Sexy!’ The Career Woman – Total Freedom. Why Settle for Less? The 24-Hour Woman – There’s More to Life than Having Children: The Happy Working Mother – Generation X and the Failures of Feminism – Feminism Failed Me: Childcare and the Denigration of Motherhood – Baby Hunger – Choosing to Stay at Home – Domestic Goddesses and Playboy Bunnies: Remembering Feminism in a ‘Post-Feminist’ Era – Remembering and Forgetting.