Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Pinnies on Women's Hour

Women's hour is a venerable BBC institution and one that I missed very much before I discovered the web streaming version of it. This week they broadcast an interesting item about the publication of This book . This is 'The Gentle Art of Domesticity" by the woman better known as Yarnstorm .
The podcast of the broadcast is available for download from here .

I've mentioned this blog before - with her colourful and enticing description of a life spent knitting, quilting, and baking fresh buns for her 3 children's return from school. It's a fantasy life - but an appealing one - for all I know this is actually the author's real life - as much as a blog is ever real.


However, what has amazed me is the storm of criticism that the publication of the book seems to have generated, largely accusations of 'anti-feminism' . It is astonishing that even in 2007 women should be called on to defend their choices to work - or not, to knit - or not. To me, the legacy of feminism is that I have the choice to work, be a mother, bake, and knit... if that is what I want to do.


The other avenue of criticism against the book is that it is elitist. That because the author has the leisure to spend her time quilting or icing petit four, before collecting her three children from their fee-paying school, it somehow excludes the rest of us without the income to support such a lifestyle. This really amused me because the one thing that you can say about cooking, baking, and knitting, is that they are not typically the pastimes of the rich!

What has warmed my heart is that my sentiments seem to be shared by the majority of the Women's Hour listeners who commented on this broadcast, as well as the readers of the Yarnstorm blog....well maybe that last one is not so surprising...but Hurray for Women's Hour! After all, this is really just a knitting/crochet/quilting/baking book (which I have not actually read).

The book has been labelled "pinny pxxx" so, to close, here is a picture of me in my pinny.

1 comment:

Christina said...

I am not bringing my pinny - is that a problem?
(Though the quantity of patterns for pinnies there have been in Stitchcraft over the years implies that sooner or later there will be one in Pattern of the Month!)