By Harmeet Kaur, CNN, Published 11:38 AM EST, Tue December 27, 2022
Editor’s Note: The past year was filled with uncertainty over politics, the economy and the ongoing pandemic. In the face of big changes, people found themselves longing for a different time. CNN’s series “The Past Is Now” examines how nostalgia manifested in our culture in 2022 — for better or for worse.
CNN — On certain corners of the internet, a segment of women is exhibiting a nostalgia for an era it has never known. These millennials and zoomers glamorize the aesthetics of 1950s Americana, donning retro fit-and-flare dresses and posting vintage illustrations of aproned housewives placing dinner on the table.
Their politics, too, hearken back to that of the post-World War II boom (at least, for those who were straight, White and middle class). In their ideal society, men are the providers, women are the homemakers and the nuclear family is the holy grail.
These young women belong to a small subculture called “tradwives.” Short for traditional wives, tradwives aren’t your average stay-at-home moms. They sneer at what they consider to be modern-day feminism, with its girlbosses and its ungratifying grind, and wax lyrical about the value of traditional gender roles. Crucially, they promote submission to one’s husband, sometimes evoking fundamentalist Christian principles in their beliefs.