“My parents didn’t like it. They were very upset about my leaving St. Louis. I was just twenty-two years old. You know, Armenian girls stayed home until they got married, and you were looked at kind of funny if you left your family home before you got married. It just ‘wasn’t right.’ But I left. I moved in with Bernice and I went to work.” (1)

In the 1950’s Alice Peurala left her parents’ home in Missouri to move to Chicago and work. Her parents were upset with the decisions she made because they felt that a girl’s place was in the home until she was married off, then she was to be in that home. However, Alice wanted to work. She worked numerous jobs in various factories and shops. She joined unions and strived to be an active woman in the work force. This where we see that some cultures and families want to keep the traditional roles alive; women in the home, men in the work force. Though Alice’s family wasn’t particularly thrilled with her decision to leave home, society was more accepting of women choosing to make moves like this. It is clear the Alice’s parents a little bit stuck in the past while Alice is trying to move forward and shift with society. It is important to note that this happened to a lot of young women. They held back because their parents wanted them to live their lives a certain way. We can see this trend still happening around us today.

(1)Farrell, Brigid and Joyce L. Kornbluh. Rocking the Boat: Women, Unions, and Change, 1915-1975. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1996: 263



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