Today I'm a guest-blogger at my friend Candice Watter's site, Women Praying Boldly. Candice asked me to contribute a perspective on what feminism has done to marriage. Here's how I started:
One of the things I loved the most about Candice's book was the bold call to prayer.
I’ve been part of many “prayer circles” by single women who have petitioned the Lord, with thanksgiving, for husbands—and He has provided for numerous women in surprising ways! I’ve seen women of all ages, abilities, shapes, sizes, and ethnicities get married. One thing is for sure: marriage is not just for “certain” people, whatever your definition of the deserving may be.
That said, I’m glad I know the power of prayer—because for the last two hundred years, changes in our culture have certainly thrown up barriers to getting and staying married. If you find it frustrating or confusing to understand relationships and marriage today, you have good reason. It’s not just you. It’s our whole culture.
You may be surprised that I said two hundred years, and not just two or three decades. That was one of the things I learned as I collected research for my latest book, Radical Womanhood: Feminine Faith in a Feminist World. I knew that the women’s liberation movement that arose in my lifetime had downgraded marriage. But I didn’t know that there was a century of history before women’s lib hit in the 1960s. And those changes were very profound.
So I’d like to give you a brief overview of how relationships changed between men and women. Chances are, you may be quite unaware of this information, but you feel its effects every day.
In order to understand the gender confusion of the 21st century, you have to rewind past the girl power movement of the 1990s, the women’s liberation movement of the 1970s, the suburban domesticity of the 1950s, the Rosie-the-Riveter era of World War II, the sexual brazenness of the Jazz Age, and even the 19th-century push for women’s right to vote, right to the founding of our nation.
Read the rest on Candice's blog -- Early Views on Marriage (part one) and The Rise of the Hook-Up Culture (part two). If you leave a comment on her blog, you will also have a chance to win one of five copies of Radical Womanhood.