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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Julia Virginia Jones, October 6, 1997. Interview J-0072. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Working women violate traditional gender norms

Jones's husband was ambivalent about her law school work because it challenged the dominant male ideal of women, as well as male masculinity. This theme of women's work outside the home as threatening to gender norms recurs throughout this interview.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Julia Virginia Jones, October 6, 1997. Interview J-0072. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

NANCY S. FRIEDMAN:
Did your husband encourage you to go to law school?
JUDGE JULIA V. JONES:
That's a long story. Yes and no. He encouraged me at the beginning because he really liked women in his class, but later as we went back to Shelby in the summers and he worked with some lawyers and saw how nice it was that their wives were at home cooking dinner for them, he really felt like that you couldn't have two careers. Unfortunately, he and I both knew that you can't put the cow back in the barn after she's out, and that I was on my way. That I was going to do it, and we talked about it, and both agreed that I was too far along. This was right before I was getting ready to start. This was after a summer in Shelby. So, I went on to law school and then I ended up two years in Shelby working for Woodrow Jones and then my husband and I divorced after that. So, it was not the going to law school. It was all the other things that people divorce about that happened.
NANCY S. FRIEDMAN:
Was your family supportive?
JUDGE JULIA V. JONES:
My family was very supportive. My husband's family was not supportive because I wasn't taking care of their little boy.