The Jet Sex: Airline Stewardesses and the Making of an American Icon is a study of stewardesses from the 1940s until the 1970s. This book goes into detail on the requirements stewardesses needed to get jobs as well as their fight to bend the rules. Before I read this book, I didn’t know stewardesses had to be registered nurses. They also had to leave the job once they were married or became pregnant. This book also goes into how stewardesses had a large impact on the women’s rights movement.
The Jet Sex is a very well researched book with many interesting footnotes if you want to learn more. This book was originally Victoria Vantoch’s dissertation which came out in 2008 titled, “Ambassadors of the Air: The Airline Stewardess, Glamour and Technology in the Cold War, 1945 to 1969.” The dissertation looked into how airline stewardesses helped the women’s rights movement in the context of Cold War ideology. This book expands more into the creation of the job of airline stewardess, and the ways that the woman fought to earn the job as well as keep it.
The Jet Sex sometimes reads like a textbook, but overall I really enjoyed reading it. This book doesn’t only teach things about airline stewardesses, but there is also information about women finally being able to become pilots themselves. The Jet Sex also goes into the changing of plane technology and how it helped to provide more comfort as time went by. This book is very well written and informative, I recommend it to anyone interested in feminism or the history of flight.