Categories
life before feminism misogyny music reactionary bullshit that's not funny! violence against men/women

Life Before Feminism: “It’s a shame to whip your wife on Sunday.”

I have a certain fondness for old-timey hillbilly music, the kind of stuff you can find on any number of great compilations on Yazoo records. But sometimes, alas, the lyrics to the songs reflect some old-timey bigotries that are much less charming than the music itself. Poking around on YouTube earlier today looking for the stuff I ran across this little ditty:

The lyrics:

Well, it’s a shame to whip your wife on Sunday.

Yes, it’s a shame to whip your wife on Sunday.

When you’ve got Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday,

      Thursday, Friday, Saturday

It’s a shame to whip your wife on Sunday.

 

It’s a shame to get drunk on Sunday.

Yes, it’s a shame to get drunk on Sunday.

When you’ve got Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday,

      Thursday, Friday, Saturday

It’s a shame to get drunk on Sunday.

Pity about the lyrics, because it’s got such a nice little banjo riff.

Cleanse your ears out with this song, a perky little number called “Hallelujah to the Lamb,” that I think would leave even Satan himself tapping his cloven hooves.

81 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Viscaria
Viscaria
10 years ago

You don’t even see an ally when he comes up to you and all but bites you on the nose!

Meller owes me a new cute cream cableknit, this one is covered with orange juice. “Ally?”

News flash: domestic violence happened in whatever your ideal era was, too (some sort of magical 1950-meets-1830 type of situation?) Victims just didn’t have the same chances to speak out.

Zhinxy, I’m so sorry you had to experience that. I applaud your bravery in mentioning it in a space where idiots are free to tell you that you either deserved it, or it didn’t happen at all.

hellkell
hellkell
10 years ago

If feminists* agree with each other, they get accused of being an echo chamber or a hive mind. If feminists disagree with each other they get accused of turning on their own and being hostile. Fuck that shit and fuck you for trying it on.

Quoted for truth.

Note that none of our usual trolls had the stones to step in that thread.

VoiP
VoiP
10 years ago

MRAL did, right before it got shut down. Total vapidity, as usual.

Danny D
Danny D
7 years ago

This song is really a progressive Christian song of the 1920’s criticizing people who were willing to suspend sinning (whipping your wife, drinking, gambling, etc) on Sundays but would be “Godless” the rest of the week.

This song is certainly not an anti-feminist song. If anything, it was even more progressive than the people knew it was. The problem with Christians and others exists today – people do not practice what they preach and this song is pure satire.

The days before feminism… this is unfair and misrepresentation of the song.

Rach
Rach
7 years ago

I think his mistake was that he made the video without “explaining in detail”, what the song was about. The song is about religious hypocrites, people who sin Monday-Saturday and then think that because they go to church on Sunday they are without fault.

If you study history in particular, 1800’s-1900’s ….alcohol was very much the work of the devil, people thought, because of this alcohol was looked down upon, a sinners drink, so to have a song that has domestic violence paired with alcohol, isn’t in any way linking the two as if they were to go hand-in-hand but rather to say that whipping a wife is extremely bad.

Basically, the song is literally calling out the man on his own hypocrisy “Why stop whipping your wife on a Sunday to hide the fact that you’re a wife-beater?, The song was meant to embarrass, and to make men feel guilty for lack of accountability”

The other thing is there is a lot of bluegrass, blues, and folk songs that depict horrible stories,you have to understand that back in those days…..songs were a way for slaves to carry down oral history, many couldn’t read, many couldn’t write, and to record the grief of those times, it was done by word of mouth, passed down from one generation to the next.

D P
D P
6 years ago

I find your take on the song interesting. Because you are almost certainly missing the point. First of all the song is not chauvinistic at all. His line about whipping your wife on Sunday is like the other verses in that he is pointing out undesirable behaviors. Other verses talk about playing cards, getting drunk, and in the case of fishing… I guess at that time in history, people thought it more desirable to be in church on “the Sabbath”.

The intent of this song was to be “tongue in cheek”. The writer is actually poking fun at people who were “Sunday Only Christians”. Meaning the person who is righteous on Sunday, but sins the rest of the week. In other words it’s not OK to sin on Sunday, but the rest of the week it’s perfectly fine.

Once you understand the satire of the song, you realize it was fairly groundbreaking. Which is why a lot of modern artist still perform it today. I would be careful to categorize this as biggotry. It’s nothing of the sort.

%d bloggers like this: