In Judy Brady’s informal or personal essay, “I Want a Wife”, she explains why she would want a wife. She is humorously in her essay while teaching the unmarried and also the married women the role of an uncomplicated wife. At times, everyone wishes they had someone to relay on and do things for him or her (Ethos).
Pathos- She ends up answering the question, “why I want a wife?” and concluding “my god, who wouldn’t want a wife?” at the end. This shows she has comfortably stated what she had to say.
Logos- The essay is very well put together by the way it’s illustrating how a dream wife
should be. Which is Brady wanting a wife so she can be independent, can take care of her physical needs, take care of her children, sensitive to her sexual needs. She lays out a list of what most women do when they have the job of a wife, such as taking care of any needs for her children, working her self, giving support to her husband while he goes to school, etc.
In the essay “I Want a Wife”, the author uses different words and ways to get the
reader’s attention. Brady’s uses repetition to make sure her point is getting across. She is
constantly describing what she wants in a wife and what she wants her to take care of. An
example of this is “I want a wife who will not bother me with rambling complaints about
a wife’s duties.” She believes every husband’s depends on the wife to take care of
everything while they do nothing. Throughout the whole essay this line “I want a wife…”
is used in many different listing of jobs that a wife performs. The use of “I” is also
repeated and shows the selfishness of a husband’s point a view, “I want a wife who will
work and send me to school”. Another example of being selfish in the essay is “… a wife
who will pick up after me”. The essay also uses connotation in some sentences, “it
suddenly occurred to me that too would like a wife”.
There are various types of ways syntax is used in the essay. Diverse style
techniques, such as repetition and irony, are used along with the structural technique of
using levels of intimacy. Anaphora; One of the main style techniques is repetition of “I want a wife…” and the use of “I” and “my”. This emphasizes the ideas that she is stating by
making her ideas stronger and shows the selfish viewpoint of a husband. She gives the
reader different views of a wife to picture in their mind and shows how much a husband
aspects out of a wife. As examples, a husband wants the wife ‘not to bother him, with
rambling complaints, types papers for him’, ‘be independent, so he can go to school and
study whatever he wants’, ‘physical needs, cooks good meals, plans the menus, do
grocery, picks up after him, keeps the house clean’, ‘take care of his and his kids social
life’, ‘sexual needs’ and ‘quit working after he’s done his studies’. Along with repetition,
irony is used from the beginning of the essay, starting with the title.
One of the rhetorical devices that this essay uses is repetition. This is used to
show the selfish viewpoint of husbands and young men who picture a wife that would do
everything for them. Brady’s use of repetition of words makes her ideas stronger. She is direct in the details while repeating the issues that concern her in her own life, “I want a wife who will plan the menus, do the necessary grocery shopping, prepare the meals, serve them pleasantly, and then do the cleaning up while I do my studying”. It makes it easier to understand what she is saying and going through that she would want a wife of her own while she is a wife her self. Repeating of words such as ‘I want…, child, food, friends, study, cleans, helping, house, needs, wife’s duties, etc.’, shows what in her life she cares for and illustrates a sexist part of how young men think what they are going to get out of their wives. There is also a lot of repetition of “I want awife…”, “I”, “my”, to make the point across to the readers.
Another rhetorical device used in this essay is irony. It’s used to add a little
humor and to expand a judgment of how man perspective is on gender roles. “I want a
wife who will work and send me to school”. Irony is used from the starting of the essay
to the end. From the title, the audience would think the author is a male but it isn’t. The
way the whole essay is written on regretting on being a wife and now thinking about
owning one is kind of adding sarcasm, along with irony. By the use of irony in the essay,
it sends a massage to all the male readers who depiction of having a faultless wife in their
future life. The strategy of using irony is that it shows that all males are looking for a wife
as prefect as the one described by Brady. They think about the things that their wife’s
would do to make their lives trouble-free. As for physical and social needs: “I want a wife who will keep my clothes clean”, “who cooks the meals”, “who will care for me when I am sick” and “a wife who will take care of my social life. And while I am going to school I want a wife to take care of my children”.
Hyperbole; In addition to the other rhetorical devices, there is imagery as well. It puts a
picture in the reader’s mind when she lists the things that she would want a wife to do.
Brady uses imagery to also describe a lot of things that wife’s do and it makes it clear to
understand. When the reader’s are reading the essay, they can relate to it, because she
describes everything in detail and the readers don’t have problem illustrating the images,
so it is easier for them to relate to. They can also picture what she is going through that
she has such detail ideas of what she wants a wife to do.
The tone in the easy is mostly selfish and sexist. Brady lists many jobs that a wife
dose and is expected to do by everyone. She plays a role in her life doing the same jobs
for her husband and her children and now she seems to be sick of them and wants a wife
of her own to help out. Though she describes the behavior of a male wanting a wife in his
life, so he can depend on her for everything and do nothing himself. This shows the
sexist and the selfish viewpoint by men over the role of a wife.
As for me I think I would also like a wife, to do all the household tasks. It would make my life a lot easier.
Brady, Judy. I want a wife. 1971. Web.