More on Mary Kay: Why The Pink Pyramid Wants You to Have It All

Harpers.org Mary Kay & Having It All by Virginia Sole-Smith

 

As a follow-up to yesterday’s announcement about my article, The Pink Pyramid Scheme (which, annoyingly, is behind a paywall online right now — I know!), I‘ve written a companion piece that you can read for free on Harpers.org called “How Mary Kay Sells Women On Having It All.”

Because there has been a lot of talk online recently about that whole “having it all” thing — why women still don’t have it, what “it” even is and whether we want it, and so on. And Lord knows, we’re blaming feminists for plenty, but the fact of the matter is, Mary Kay Ash started promising women economic independence and empowerment back in 1963, way before power suits were trendy. But even as she built up the idea of having it all (and even later wrote a self-help book by the same name), she held firmly to the Mary Kay company motto: God first, family second, career third. Which neatly traps women in traditional gender roles, meaning your only path to empowerment is one that leaves the status quo tidy and intact.

So more on all that — and my story! — over on Harpers.org right now. I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Filed under Beauty Labor, Career Opportunities, Customer Cult, Happenings, Makeup, Mary Kay, Press

Tagged as , , , , , , , , , ,

2 Comments

One Comment

  1. Posted July 19, 2012 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

    “When we assume that the needs for flexible work hours and equal pay are just “women’s issues,” we do a disservice to the many men who want to be equal partners in their households, and we enable the dysfunctional pattern in which American women who work full-time nevertheless continue to do most of the housework and childcare.”

    Yes and yes! It’s everywhere this idea, even in the middle class left leaning British newspapers I frequent. Articles on stay at home mothers vs working mothers everywhere, with not a thought given to the dad.

    It’s looking increasingly likely that we will soon be a female breadwinner – male homemaker household, not through choice (out choice would be to both work part time) but we are about to have a baby and my husband is on temporary contracts that require constant renewal and that pay barely more than childcare would cost, while my job is safe and well paid. So we are in a situation that many many couples must find themselves in, except its usually the women that end up doing the staying at home and the job insecurity and the not earning very much. And you have no idea the anxiety I feel about potentially messing up Dave’s career for ever, whereas the other way round people seem to be entering into these homemaker relationships without a second thought.

    I’m sorry, I just completely used your excellent piece to ramble on about my own little not really that related story. I guess I need to write about that!

One Trackback

  1. By [Reading List] Why Have Kids? by Jessica Valenti on September 24, 2012 at 10:32 am

    [...] why families (as in, moms and dads) are losing out in the quest for all-ness. Which is actually the conversation we need to have, as I pointed out in my response on [...]

Post a Comment

Your email is never published nor shared. Required fields are marked *

*
*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>