"I Want a Wife" Book Review: the Essence of Marriage

Essay details

Please note! This essay has been submitted by a student.

The message of this literature piece is that within the marriage a female faces too high expectations from a male. Brady refers to the category of people in society known as 'wives'. In such a way, the author focuses on wives as a distinct category of society. Here are explored stereotypes that prevail in society about the roles of women. It is written in 1971 when the feminist movement was not as popular and influential as it now, meaning that the task of the author was complicated by male-dominated societal norms. To put it differently, Brady acted as one of the pioneering feminists who were first to attract the attention of the public to the problems women normally faced in terms of marriage.

Essay due? We'll write it for you!

Any subject

Min. 3-hour delivery

Pay if satisfied

Get your price

A frequent repetition of the words “I want a wife” is intended to emphasize parallelism that is abundant in the text. Throughout the text, readers will notice the enumeration of wife-related duties, which in turn points to the stereotypical nature of household responsibilities that normally rest with women when they marry. More specifically, Brady mentions such typical wife-related activities as taking care of children, satisfying a husband, cleaning the house, cooking and shopping. As the text suggests, a male is a beneficiary of the wife's activities. Succinctly, the role of a wife in marriage lies in meeting the expectations of a man rather than pursuing her own objectives and dreams.

The text is abundant in illustrations of excessive societal standards a female should meet when she becomes a wife. Because the word “wife” is frequently repeated, it is possible to assume that the author refers to the role of a wife as a substitute for females’ own identity. Hence, if a woman marries and thus becomes a wife, her life automatically transforms into a new pattern: where she no longer is capable of enjoying herself or pursuing her own goals or dreams. Rather, once a ‘wife’, a female’s life should revolve around a husband in the first place, which becomes her ultimate purpose.

The 'wife' from the husband’s perspective can be compared to his servant and therefore should always comply with his requirement. It is indicated that the wife is not entitled to complain about her responsibilities, which emphasizes the discrepancies between a male’s stance in marriage and that of a wife. Clearly, this is a satirical piece of literature, and it should be seen as the universal reflection of society. However, its satirical nature enables readers to better comprehend the essence of gender roles: where a wife does not have an equal stance with a husband within a marriage.

By focussing excessively on the nature of duties performed by the wife in the context of marriage, Brady elaborates the ideal portrayal of a wife from the man’s standpoint. That being said, an average male expects his wife to be a servant to a large extent considering the message of the essay. Being a feminist piece of literature the present essay can be applied to the present-day context as well. Specifically, it helps to better understand that feminism is a natural response to the established societal expectations that were once relevant and unavoidable for a female in marriage.

In conclusion, “I Want a Wife” by Judy Brady is an excellent satirical piece of literature that demonstrates the essence of marriage from wife and husband’s perspectives. While a wife is expected to meet the husband’s needs in a wide range of marriage aspects, a husband, in turn, is not expected to comply with the wife’s expectations. Such a stance on marriage relations correlates with feminist movement ideas and contributes to a better understanding of the erroneous nature of marriage relationships in those cases when a wife has to act as a servant of her husband instead of being an equal partner.   

Get quality help now

Prof. Johnson

Verified writer

Proficient in: Literature

4.9 (1373 reviews)
“Good paper. Just have to change the heading to what was on the article instead of what you thought it should be.”

+75 relevant experts are online

More I Want a Wife Related Essays

banner clock
Clock is ticking and inspiration doesn't come?
We`ll do boring work for you. No plagiarism guarantee. Deadline from 3 hours.

We use cookies to offer you the best experience. By continuing, we’ll assume you agree with our Cookies policy.