by Mike Shea on 7 September 2004
I love seeing how the world changes. I love seeing how things were just fifty years ago and comparing them to how different they are today. James Bond films are one of my favorite barometers of society. Watch how Bond treats women in Dr. No or how Live and Let Die treats black people. Films like that would never make it past the MPAA or most of the public today without some huge whiny protest and outrage.
Take a look at this Good Wife's Guide, published in the May 1955 issue of Housekeeping Monthly:
Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready, on time for his return. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospect of a good meal (especially his favorite dish!) is part of the warm welcome needed. Prepare yourself. Take 15 minutes to rest so you'll be refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your make-up, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh-looking. He has just been with a lot of work-weary people! Be a little gay and a little more interesting to him. His boring day may need a lift and one of your duties is to provide it. Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house just before your husband arrives. Gather up schoolbooks, toys, paper, etc. and then run a dust cloth over the tables. Over the cooler months of the year you should prepare and light a fire for him to unwind by. Your husband will feel he has reached a haven of rest and order, and it will give you a lift too! After all, catering to his comfort will provide you with immense personal satisfaction. Prepare the children. Take a few minutes to wash the children's hands and faces (if they are small), comb their hair and, if necessary, change their clothes. They are little treasures and he would like to see them playing the part. Minimize the noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all noise of the washer, dryer, or vacuum. Try to encourage the children to be quiet. Be happy to see him. Greet him with a warm smile and show sincerity in your desire to please him. Listen to him. You may have a dozen important things to tell him, but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him talk first - remember, his topics of conversation are more important than yours. Make the evening his. Never complain if he comes home late or goes out to dinner, or other places of entertainment without you. Instead try to understand his world of strain and pressure and his very real need to be at home and relax. Your goal: Try to make sure your home is a place of peace, order, and tranquility where your husband can renew himself in body and spirit. Don't greet him with complaints and problems. Don't complain if he's home late for dinner or even if he stays out all night. Count this as minor compared to what he might have gone through that day. Make him comfortable. Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or have him lie down in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him. Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soothing, and pleasant voice. Don't ask him questions about his actions or question his judgment or integrity. Remember, he is the master of the house and, as such, will always exercise his will with fairness and truthfulness. You have no right to question him. A good wife always knows her place.
I also enjoy this montage of 1920s and 30s pulp fiction magazine covers complete with black men whipping pink-slip wearing blondes. Oh how I would love to write bloody sexy fiction for "Spicy Adventure Stories".