Document Type



Bachelor of Arts in English


James Tackach, Ph.D.


In the American post-war 1950s, most people were looking for life to get back to normal: men getting jobs in the city and women taking care of the children and the suburban household. This picture-perfect lifestyle was the foundation of the American Dream that everyone was supposed to admire and strive for, and they expected to feel satisfied with life once they achieved its standards of living. However, many women who aspired to be the perfect housewife and mother, expecting to achieve lasting fulfillment and happiness, found themselves feeling just the opposite. This feeling that women found themselves experiencing when working towards the perfect life and falling short came to be known by researcher Betty Friedan as “the feminine mystique," exemplified in the character April Wheeler in Richard Yates' novel Revolutionary Road.