"In politics, If you want anything said, ask a man.
If you want anything done, ask a woman.”
The consequences of Martha Chase's syndrome were as devastating as they were fast. Suddenly a generation of women found themselves having to cover all the leadership and authority roles that were previously the prerogative of men. At the same time, in the imagination of society in the following years, an image of a weaker male took hold, a male who somehow needed to be protected from the world and above all controlled. The decrease in births and the early male infertility soon brought men to be considered a precious commodity, available only to those women who were able to keep them safe and provide an adequate living standard. This meant that only women with a solid career or a significant economic stability could afford the luxury of a husband by their side, while women from the less wealthy classes found themselves having to share a partner, forming alternative family units. Men were allowed just a few non-strenuous occupations, because of their physical fragility, and in positions subordinate to women; their main task was to raise children and spend as much time with them as possible before the first signs of physical and mental decay would make it dangerous for the men to take care of children. The most resourceful could try, for a few years, to fulfill jobs such as teacher, secretary, assistant, but a virtue was made of necessity, and the most appreciated virtues for a man resided in his being husband and father, destined to a comfortable and safe life as a new "domestic angel". Not only were men to be safeguarded and protected to guarantee the survival of the species, but a collective feeling also arose of wishing to grant the weaker sex ease, comfort and lack of worry in their short period of life. On the other hand, the decrease in available men led to the onset of new social unrest, brought on by those women who had failed at their careers and who showed their dissatisfaction with continuous protests.
Now, in the '80s, the transformations in the construction of male and female identities, the imposition of new technologies simplifying domestic work and the progressive increase in wages thanks to the economic boom has allowed many men to devote themselves totally to their homes and to the enhancement and elevation of the paternal role. By now the radicalization, in the collective imagination of the figure of the masculine homemaker and the female "bread winner", is a standard everyone adapts to.
In a world that applauds the "perfect" man, good husband and father, there are also figures who, with their ideas, deviate from these unwritten laws. These are dangerous libertines, who attract the resentment and dissent of the most vigorous and radical supporters of this new social state.