Culture,  Theology/Bible

Southwestern Homemaking Degree on NBC

The College at Southwestern’s new homemaking degree has provoked a great deal of discussion under my previous post, “Drs. Patterson Defend Homemaking Degree.” This morning I watched NBC’s “Today Show” broadcast a story on the same topic.

The piece has two parts: (1) a pre-recorded report on the homemaking program including footage from the College at Southwestern, and (2) an interview with two people who have opposing views about the curriculum. Part one presents a fairly well-balanced report. In Part two, the interviewer and the woman speaking against the program dominate the conversation. They don’t give much time at all to the guy from Focus on the Family who was there in defense of the College’s position.

That’s my assessment. You watch it, and tell me yours. It’s about 5 minutes long.

“Homemaking a major at one college” – NBC News

P.S. I just saw this CNN video linked on SBCOutpost. It features Dr. Paige Patterson talking about the program.


  • Aaron Smith

    The beauty of a free marketplace is that people can elect to either purchase or not purchase goods and services. If you don’t want to major in homemaking, then don’t. If you don’t like the fact that an institution offers homemaking courses (whether it is for women only or open to both), then you don’t need to attend that institution.

    I’m not particularly interested in theology of the Ladder Day Saint church, so I choose not to attend that church or attend BYU.

    I’m interested to know how many people opposed to this program at Soutwestern are also pro-abortion, and how many of those people display bumper stickers on their cars with slogan, “Don’t like abortion? Don’t have one.”

  • Sue


    You asked about the clip. Here are a few thoughts. The Focus on the Family rep was asked why stay at home fathers could not enroll. He made some very enthusiastic comments about SAHD’s but then he couldn’t really think of why they should not get into the course so he didn’t answer.

    On the next question, about whether the course teaches submission he denied any knowledge of the curriculum, even though it explicitly says that it will teach the Biblical family model.

    So, ultimately, I did not see that he was prepared to defend wifely submission on TV. This might be wise on his part as World Vision is now announcing that denial of decision-making power is a major threat to the health and safety of women world-wide.

    That is why I think he got slightly less that his fair share of the time slot.

  • Joel


    Continuing our conversation from the last Homemaker post…

    You said:

    “I don’t know anyone who is arguing that “the whole of a woman’s duty” is homemaking. The Pattersons and SWBTS aren’t saying that. I’m not saying that. Complementarianism doesn’t teach that. Where are you getting that from?”

    And, I said:

    Homemaker concentration: “Preparing women to model THE (unique/singular- see Russell’s Theory of Descriptions) characteristics of a Godly woman as outlined in Scripture…”

  • Sue

    From a World Vision brief, March, 2006,

    * Create programmes and raise awareness among men and women to acknowledge and alleviate the burdens of women’s triple role in their home, workplace, and community, and promote women’s equal participation in decision-making.
    * Enhance the social support system to enable women to work outside of the home by providing free/subsidised and good quality day-care centres for infants and elders.
    * Governmental and international agencies, NGOs, employers, and trade unions must ensure equal rights and equal pay for all women.
    * Women in leadership must be encouraged to build their capacity, confidence, assertiveness, and leadership skills while increasing the number of female staff who serve as role models. At the same time, men must be made aware of the shared benefits of gender equality, enabling them to relate to and work positively with empowered women.
    * Furthermore, World Vision suggests partnership with social institutions such as churches, council of elders, community leaders and other sources of influence to remove barriers that prevent women from full participation.
    * Educate men and women on shared gender roles that allow familial and social equity leading to households and societies where both genders have equal opportunities and access to resources and decision making.

    I think the issue is that if we are not with them, we are against them. This is the kind of thing that should be taught at university .

  • Bryan L

    I started to talk to my wife (who is a homemaker) about this degree and she thought it was unnecessary. She thought you can learn everything you need about homemaking from tv or books now. She wasn’t raised with a mom that was a homemaker and when we got married she really didn’t know anything about all the duties that being a homemaker entailed. But she learned them on her own and now is awesome at what she does. I guess that’s part of the reason I don’t see that this degree is practical or a good use of time and money.

    She also told me something interesting that I didn’t know about the word “homemaker”. She told me it is actually an inclusive word that was created to include both men and women, instead of just saying housewife or househusband. It doesn’t seem this degree is being aimed at both men and women. Although they may be saying a woman doesn’t have to be a homemaker, I wonder what their opinion is about a man being a homemaker instead of his wife?

    Bryan L

  • Paul

    First: of course the GUY from Focus on the Family was cut off.

    Think about it, program that can be called sexist even by many Christians, being defended by a male. This only goes to show just how out of touch James Dobson is that he sent a guy to defend his position here.

    Secondly: it’d be a fine program if it was offered for free. And if it’s THAT important to Southwestern, they should have no problem with offering this major with a full scholarship. But once again, I feel that it is irresponsible to offer a major that teaches people how to not be in the workforce, and doubly irresponsible to then charge $15-20K per year for the priveldege.

  • Sue


    Come to think of it, World Vision should bring the gospel to Southwestern. Imagine what an example we North Americans are being around the world.

  • David

    To all,
    Aaron Smith. I have a huge problem with this program. No I don’t have a bumper sticker, and no I’m not pro-abortion. I find your comments rather offensive.
    To all others, Paige Patterson and the things that he has done not only at SWBTS but also with the IMB are the reason that I picked my wife up and move 900 miles aways from Texas (where I grew up) to go to a Seminary that wasn’t associated with him. A homemaking degree, in my humble opinion, is just another way for Mr. Patterson to enforce his theology of male headship.
    Why else would women also not be allowed to take any really serious bible classes or teaching/preaching classes? Why else would an undergraduate professor I had show me an email Patterson sent to his faculty/staff concerning women wearing only dresses? And why else would he lie to the one woman on his staff and tell her she would always be welcome there as she had just bought a house in the area and her husband was unable to work due to illness only then to turn around and fire her because she was a woman?

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