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Exhibition Drawn to Purpose

Roberta MacDonald (1917–1999). [Wife dressed for work kisses sleeping husband good-bye], 1943. Published in The New Yorker, September 25, 1943. Ink, opaque white, and graphite. New Yorker Cartoon Collection, Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress (027.00.00)
Roberta MacDonald/The New Yorker Collection/The Cartoon Bank © Condé Nast

Role Reversal

Roberta MacDonald created this gently humorous cartoon during the World War II era when thousands of women entered the work force. Unlike many cartoonists at that time, she depicted women in the military and other jobs. With witty humor, she poked fun at her own gender's preoccupation with appearance, gender relations, and high-handed personalities, publishing more than one hundred cartoons in the New Yorker from 1940–1952. As the magazine selected less and less of her work, she turned increasingly to book illustration.