Reviews of Homeward Bound

“3.5 out of 4 stars” - People Magazine                                                               “The brilliance of Emily Matchar’s new book is that it exhaustively describes what disillusioned workers are opting into: a slower, more sustainable, and more self-sufficient lifestyle that’s focused on the home. Matchar synthesizes dozens of trend stories … into a single, compelling narrative about the resurgence of domesticity….Refreshing.” -The New Republic                                                       "[P]rovocatively explores what the movement says about the role of women in society today.” – The New Yorker                                                                       "I unreservedly loved it…It’s empathetic and funny and thoughtful and smart, and I encourage all of you to read it."– The Hairpin                                                         “Cogently argues that choosing a more hands-on, DIY lifestyle – family farming, canning, crafting, can, without sacrificing feminism’s hard-won gains, improve on an earlier time when ‘people lived more lightly on the earth and relied less on corporations, and family and community came first.’” - ELLE                                                               “[I]ntelligent and insightful...essential reading.” - Christianity Today                                                       “A lively and perceptive reporter… a valuable and astute assessment.”—Publishers Weekly                                                         “A well-researched look at the resurgence of home life…. Offers intriguing insight into the renaissance of old-fashioned home traditions.”— Kirkus Reviews

What is New Domesticity?

This blog is a look at the social movement I call ‘New Domesticity’ – the fascination with reviving “lost” domestic arts like canning, bread-baking, knitting, chicken-raising, etc. Why are women of my generation, the daughters of post-Betty Friedan feminists, embracing the domestic tasks that our mothers and grandmothers so eagerly shrugged off? Why has the image of the blissfully domestic supermom overtaken the Sex & the City-style single urban careerist as the media’s feminine ideal? Where does this movement come from? What does it mean for women? For families? For society?                                                                                     My book, Homeward Bound: Why Women Are Embracing the New Domesticity, which explores New Domesticity in greater depth, will be published by Simon & Schuster in May 2013.

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The New Republic review of Homeward Bound

A really smart, really insightful review of Homeward Bound by Ann Friedman (I’m a huge fan of her hilarious pie charts) in The New Republic.

An excerpt:

The brilliance of Emily Matchar’s new book, Homeward Bound: Why Women Are Embracing the New Domesticity, is that it exhaustively describes what disillusioned workers are opting into: a slower, more sustainable, and more self-sufficient lifestyle that’s focused on the home. The woman who leaves the public workplace is “the Brooklyn hipster who quit her PR job to sell hand-knitted scarves at craft fairs,” Matchar writes. “She’s the dreadlocked ‘radical homemaker’ who raises her own chickens to reduce her carbon footprint. She’s the thirty-one-year-old new mom who starts an artisan cupcake company from her home kitchen rather than return to her law firm. He’s the hard-driven Ivy Leaguer fleeing corporate life for a Vermont farm.” Though the vast majority of Machar’s subjects are women, this is not just a story about gender roles. It’s about what happens when the structures we were raised to buy into don’t provide what they were supposed to provide, and the alternative values that have, for a growing subset of Americans, come to replace them.

If this makes you want to read Homeward Bound, there are 26 days until publication! Pre-order now at Amazon or IndieBound.

4 comments to The New Republic review of Homeward Bound

  • That is a great review. I also like this line, “It addresses the fact that, in just about every way, our economy, culture, and policies have yet to catch up”

  • Emily

    Thanks, Ruben!

  • Now I wouldn’t go as far as saying that everyone in this movement does it because of the work-place conditions. I personally just do it because I am not interested in a job in the first place, no matter the conditions – I just want to be home with my kids, and a lot of people are like that. Being a working mom is not a default choice and being a stay at home mom is not a failure to thrive in the work place. Some folks who can afford (like us, at least for now) just love these traditional roles.

  • who can afford this lifestyle, meaning. Actually all of the diy makes it a whole lot more affordable, like you never need to buy meat, ever.