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The Home Economics Story (1951)

| Short, Documentary
Opportunities for young women in the field of home economics.


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This high-school educational film describes the benefits and opportunities available to young women who go to college and major in home economics. The film follows Kay, Helen, Louise, and Jean throughout their college years, as they take a variety of interesting and useful classes and eventually accept job offers in their chosen specialties. Nevertheless, the traditional middle-class ideals of marriage and stay-at-home motherhood are reinforced. Written by yortsnave

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Short | Documentary







Filming Locations:

Ames, Iowa, USA

Company Credits

Production Co:

Iowa State College See more »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:




Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Narrator: Carol, who is now Mrs. Bill Johnson, took a home economics course. Not one that would lead to professional employment, but one which fitted her for that very important career of being... Mrs. Johnson.
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User Reviews

Pretty Dang Funny
31 December 2009 | by CalabossSee all my reviews

This short is pretty darn funny all on its own when viewed today, although the MST3k treatment definitely bumps it to a 10. This short was never shown in theaters, but was shown at high schools to girls to reveal possibilities for their lives (other than marrying the high school quarterback and becoming Mrs. Dirk Squarejaw, housewife and mother).

When you younger kids see this you might wonder how things could have been that bad for women less than 60 years ago. But the fact is, humans are an incredibly adaptive species. If you'd have told just about anybody in 1951 that a black man would be elected President of the U.S. in 2008, they'd have laughed their butt off. But here we are- Black President, and women Senators, astronauts, and race car drivers. Who'd a thunk it?

But back then, Home Economics was a woman's choice, until her husband ordered her to quit her job and stay at home (tee-hee). But look at it this way, modern humans have been around for at least a couple hundred thousand years, but in the last 100 years we've positively rocketed into the future. If you could bring somebody back who died in 1909 to the year 2009, they'd never even recognize the place, or understand how a woman could be a cop or plumber. Hell, back then women could only vote in 4 of 46 states!

But back to our short.......The high school girls are taught that learning to cook, sew, decorate, teach nursery school, etc., will prepare and qualify them for the most important job of being Mrs. Squarejaw. Maybe you could even be a nurse or fashion designer. If you showed this thing to modern high school girls they would never believe you were serious. They believe their tattoo artist is the only one that needs to know how to decorate. It may seem shocking to today's youth that wives in the 1950's didn't even have tramp stamps.

So, since those tough old birds that were married in the 1950's (and my Mom was one) paved the way for you young girls, you can now be judges, jet pilots, doctors and ice road truckers. Congratulations. Also, we have come far enough along to laugh at how things were for women in 1951. If you can, check out this short. It's funny, and available on Youtube.

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