Pakistan needs electricity – not Feminism

washing machines


One keeps hearing again and again that Feminism freed women from housework and allowed them to fulfill their aspirations, as they hadn’t been able to do before. Considering that Feminism took off in ‘western’ countries in the 1960s when in the previous decade time saving household appliances had become widely available it is very much debatable whether it was this ideology or the fact that there was not much left to do in the house that allowed women to go out into the world. When I visited Pakistan I had a bit of a moral dilemma with the fact that people tended to employ poorer people as maids. In Germany some people have a cleaner come into their house once a week for a couple of hours. I always thought that if I make something dirty it’s my duty to clean it again and even if I can afford it I wouldn’t want another person to clean up my dirt. And also house work is a much better work out than going to a smelly and expensive gym. But even though I am certainly exhausted after the roughly three hours of housework a week that I do I am having a different attitude as to who really cleans my dirt. I pull a vacuum cleaner through the house that sucks up all the dirt from the ground as well as any spiderwebs on the walls and the ceilings. Every two weeks I chuck my clothes into the washing machine, 2 hours later I put them on the line. Dishes I love doing as a enjoy immersing my hands in the warm water, especially when it’s cold outside. Most people use a dishwasher though and many even a dryer for their clothes. My house is clean, despite me working and I can do without a maid. I cannot do without affordable appliances and electricity. Now imagine a country where most people cannot afford these appliances and where those who can afford them don’t acquire them as they are useless when there are many hour long electricity cuts every day. Now tell me again how Feminism freed ‘western’ women and how it will free women in Pakistan. 

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