Episode 3 – Mother’s Day (And Its ‘Firebrand Feminist’ Roots) + The Emotional Load
Welcome to the House of Shrew. It is Mother’s Day on May 10 so we thought we’d give Mother’s Day the Shrews Untamed treatment and see how it looks after a bit of pot-stirring. I asked myself questions like: What’s the significance of the date? Why do the shops fill with carnations? Why do we celebrate Mother’s Day at all, and what does the way we celebrate it say about women’s place in Western culture?
And wait until you hear about the ‘firebrand’ feminist roots of Mother’s Day!
And we couldn’t talk about Mother’s Day without talking about the Emotional Load. So I’m planning to unpack how we censor what we really want to keep the family in balance.
But first, let us tell you how we’re planning to run these podcast episodes from here on in, because A: we think it’s cool (and totally stole this idea from podcasts such as The High Low and Deviant Women) and also B: we put together this podcast every week with the 0.2 seconds we have ‘spare’ so it makes sense. Also it’s nice to be surprised by what the other has to say because essentially, this pod is just an extension of every conversation we’ve had over Facebook messenger in 3 years.
Get Shrews In Your Ears:
Happy Mother’s Day, for those who celebrate it, however you celebrate it; for those who would have loved to celebrate it, and for those who have fractured relationships with their mothers, we send you kindness and understanding.
Thank you to the following sources we’ve used to fact-check, investigate, and back up our claims to make our Mother’s Day and Emotional Load episode.
Stephanie Coontz, The Way We Never Were: American Families and the Nostalgia Trap
Modern Mothers Day– this Wikipedia entry is thoroughly referenced and a very good account of (American) Mother’s Day and it’s founder, Anna Jarvis
More Anna Jarvis:
I verified some things by taking a quick look at the history of West Virginia
Mother’s Day in US and Australia – Anna Jarvis, Janet Heyden
‘And Suddenly, There’s a Story’ – Helen Garner’s essay extract (behind paywall)
Mother’s Day – Don’t Make Me Laugh – Jane Caro
Making Women’s Unpaid Work Count – Anne Manne
You Should Have Asked – Emma
Stop Calling Women Nags – Harpers Bazaar
Lucky Orange Pants Social Media Post
The Power of Women’s Anger – Soraya Chemaly
And thanks to Stacy and Kylie, Jay’s friends who allowed her to quote them for this pod.
The Cackle Of Sisterhood
It’s been at least a couple of years since Jay and Jen’s friendship was forged by a mutual fiery love of feminism and the power of wordsmithery. It took a global pandemic and things generally going to hell in a handbasket for them to throw all the right ingredients into a pot and birth the Shrews Untamed podcast.
When they’re not yelling, “I know, RIGHT?” at each other on FB Messenger, Jay is an award-winning copywriter and copy coach and Jen is an author with her first book in the works. They are also mothers, sisters, daughters, and both fans of the C word.
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Our theme music is Celtic Impulse by Kevin MacLeod
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Disclaimer on historical and literary references, and views expressed on Shrews Untamed
Unless we say otherwise, the history sources Jay and Jen mention on Shrews Untamed are from the dominant Western scholarly tradition. (That means Western history and literature was written by white men, for white men, and about white men – and a few very ‘good’ and very ‘bad’ women.) Through Feminist scholarship, the achievements, stories, and voices of women are slowly being ressurected from the past; some are lost forever.
We acknowledge that for First Nation women and Women of Colour, the history books have been closed for much longer, and the pursuit of Herstory has not been equitable, or free of Western/colonial bias.
Unless we say otherwise, most of the literary references are made to Western literature. Western literature, poetry, and artistic tradition are all filled with the names, images, and stories of women – and of course, Western patriarchal bias which has dictated our history bleeds into literature and the arts. Whether writing based on Near-Eastern historical figures like Cleopatra, the Virgin Mary, and including Western fictional characters like our dear Kate from Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew – each were envisioned and written by white men, and shown as white women, or fetishised exotics, for a largely white male audience.
The literary, cultural and artistic traditions, as well as current views of First Nation women and Women of Colour, or any non-binary person, should be told by people who have with lived that experience and/or tradition. And they are.
As we say in the outro, all opinions on content expressed on Shrews Untamed are our own. Jay and Jen are both white, CIS-het women; we can only speak with authenticity of our own white, CIS-het experience of Western culture and our world, and we do so without apology.
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Acknowledgement of Country
Jay and Jen from Shrews Untamed would like to acknowledge the land of the Karuna and Noongar people. We pay respect to elders past, present and emerging, and acknowledge the cost that has come with the uneasy sharing of this land; land which was taken. We express hope that we can move to a place of justice and equity together.
I got answers
Copyright 2015 - 2020 Jay Crisp Crow & Crisp Copy TM
Jay Crisp Crow acknowledges the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and recognises their continuing connection to land, waters, and community. This business pays its respects to them and their cultures; and to elders past, present, and emerging.