Free to Be... A Housekeeper

For those of you too young to remember...

Free to Be… You and Me, was a project of the Ms. Foundation for Women in the 1970's.

The project included a record album and illustrated book first released in November 1972 featuring songs and stories sung or told by the celebrities of the day (credited as "Marlo Thomas and Friends") including Alan Alda, Rosey Grier, Cicely Tyson, Carol ChanningMichael Jackson, Shirley Jones, Jack Cassidy, and Diana RossA television special using poetry, songs, and sketches, followed two years later in March 1974. 

The basic concept of this project was to break post-1960s gender stereotyping, and to encourage values such as individuality, tolerance, and being comfortable with one's own identity. 

The prominent message was and still is that anyone—whether a boy or a girl—can achieve anything.

In this clip, Ms. Channing brilliantly and cleverly explains to young listeners in a limerick-type monologue, how housework is NOT just "women's work" and  that TV advertising creates & perpetuates false stereotypes.

Housework - Carol Channing

(Soundtrack from Free to be You and Me, a Ms Magazine project, 1972.)


If you've no time for scrubbing a skillet or two-
or polishing pots till they gleam like new-
or scrubbing the tub or mopping the floors-
or wiping the stains from the walls and the doors-
or washing the windows, dishes or clothes,
or waxing the furniture till it just glows-
or cleaning the refrigerator, stove or sink
with a lighthearted smile and a friendly wink,
Call Eclectic Domestics and we'll be there in a jiffy
to make you house all shiny and spiffy!

To order a copy of the 35th Anniversary Edition 
of Free to Be...You and Me
click the link below!

Free to Be...You and Me
35th Anniversary Edition