Managing the Household: Achieving Control, Being Productive, Distributing Resources

  • Usha Menon


This chapter analyzes the daily routines of 37 women—young adults, mature adults and old women—from 10 extended family households to identify the reasons that mature adulthood is considered the most satisfying phase in a woman’s life. There are systematic differences in these daily routines, all of which can be traced to the family roles women occupy. The analysis indicates that women feel most in control of their own lives, most influential over others and connected most meaningfully to other people and to divinity when they are senior wives or married husband’s mother—the two family roles that mature adulthood encompasses. Thus, mature adulthood provides temple town women the greatest opportunities to access and experience wellbeing. This chapter presents a very particular picture of domesticity, one that exemplifies the moral values of self-control, self-discipline, and doing one’s duty sincerely and steadfastly—values that these women believe best ensure success and satisfaction in life.


Daily Routine Mature Adulthood Family Role Mature Adult Betel Leaf 
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Copyright information

© Springer India 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Usha Menon
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Culture and CommunicationDrexel UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

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