Tuesday 19 June 2018

Mary Kenny: If Meghan Markle wants to promote feminism, why is she quitting her job?

 

Mary Kenny, writer and author. Photo: Tony Gavin
Mary Kenny, writer and author. Photo: Tony Gavin
Mary Kenny

Mary Kenny

I always thought that one of the regrettable aspects of Grace of Monaco's life was that she quit her profession after marriage. Admittedly, women did, usually, resign their jobs on marrying (or were obliged to do so) in those days, but it didn't always apply to women in the arts, and certainly not in the performing arts - some famous actresses even styled themselves "Mrs" for added distinction.

Grace Kelly, before marrying Rainier, was one of the most renowned and striking screen actresses in the world, yet she agreed, on wedlock, that it would not be seemly, or fit in with her regal duties, to be seen continuing her career.

That was then: this is now. And what's changed? Well, Meghan Markle, who marries Prince Harry next month, has also cut her links with the performing arts, and will do no more drama performances in the future. Meghan says she wants to be a shining example of feminism, yet her first lifestyle change after marriage is to quit her job, reverting to the antediluvian "marriage bar" which was practised in Britain right up to the 1960s (and even longer in Ireland).

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