Friday 18 April 2014


She has been dubbed the ‘Queen of the Aga Saga’, thanks to her tales of middle-class romance.
Joanna Trollope said that it is becoming increasingly for common for women to become the breadwinners within a family
But it seems that Joanna Trollope may have to re-think the plot-lines of her popular novels from now on, if her thoughts on modern gender roles are anything to go by.
The 70-year-old author said that it is becoming increasingly for common for women to become the breadwinners within a family, and claiming that she frequently meets men who tell her they were glad to be able to give up work and become carers for their young children.
Miss Trollope said that she interviewed many men in the 30s and 40s while researching her novels, and was astonished at how many are now out-earned by their partners.
Speaking at the Cambridge Literary Festival, she said: ‘The statistic is that above 25 per cent of working women in the UK out-earn men they live with.
‘If you look at 18 to 40-year-olds that increases to 33 per cent. I think there’s an enormous amount of men who want to look after their children now.
‘If you look at how brilliant men are with their children now it’s obvious. But it’s going to take generations, it really is.
'I interviewed men in their 30s and early 40s about it and I was interested to see how many men said “actually I was absolutely thankful to stop working, I didn’t really like it”. And that’s making history.’
However, the author said that while traditional gender roles appeared to be shifting, more macho art forms such as rap music was still reinforcing traditional male stereotypes.
She added: ‘That’s society and culture saying you’re not less than a man because you’re going out to slay a mammoth. Culture has always said you must slay a mammoth and you must slay a bigger mammoth than the man next to you.
‘It’s still there in this guns and blades and all sorts and all the rap talk talking about hoes and so on. Uniform in Afghanistan still attracts girls like nothing else. But it’s filtered down through the years that it’s very manly. Society is beginning to say differently.
‘It’s very early days. The door has creaked open just a slither and we can lean on it.’
Twice-married Miss Trollope has made more than £15million from her 18 novels including The Village Affair and The Soldier’s Wife.

She met her second husband, television dramatist Ian Curteis, at a dinner party in 1983 and they wed 1985. She blamed her career for the breakdown of the marriage 15 years later, saying: ‘It was when I was becoming more successful that our marriage began to go badly wrong.’
The Oxford-educated daughter of a rector, and distant relative of Anthony Trollope, first wed at 22 to City banker David Potter, who she met at Oxford University.
The couple went on to have two daughters, Louise, now 36, and Antonia, 33.
They split after 18 years when it emerged that he’d had a string of affairs.
It was last year that a report by the Institute for Public Policy Research think-tank revealed that more than two million working mothers are their family’s main bread-winner.

Read more: dailymail

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