Most sexist songs of the '60s

The 6 Sexistiest Songs of the ’60s — #5


Take a Let­ter Maria” – R.B. Greaves (1969)

Last night as I got home about a half past ten
There was the woman I thought I knew
In the arms of anoth­er man
I kept my cool, I ain’t no fool
Let me tell you what hap­pened then
I packed some clothes and I walked out
And I ain’t going back again

So take a let­ter Maria, address it to my wife
Say I won’t be com­ing home, gonna start a new life
So take a let­ter Maria, address it to my wife
Send a copy to my lawyer, got­ta start a new life

You’ve been many things but most of all a good sec­re­tary to me
And it’s times like this I feel you’ve always been close to me
Was I wrong to work nights to try to build a good life
All work and no play has just cost me a wife

When a man loves a woman it’s hard to understand
That she would find more plea­sure in the arms of anoth­er man
I nev­er real­ly noticed how sweet you are to me
It just so hap­pens I’m free tonight
Would you like to have din­ner with me

So take a let­ter Maria, address it to my wife
Send a copy to my lawyer, got­ta start a new life


There’s some­thing so awe­some­ly sex­ist about hav­ing your sec­re­tary draft a let­ter to your wife telling her you’re leav­ing – then ask­ing the sec­re­tary on a date.  In my opin­ion, “Take a Let­ter Maria” illus­trates ‘60s sex­ism pret­ty per­fect­ly, and it was this song that made me start want to do this list.  I was expect­ing this song to be my #1, but as I con­tin­ued to do my research, I real­ized that there were FAR more sex­ist songs out there.  It would have been ranked high­er if the singer had left his wife for no rea­son at all (which is how I remem­ber the song when I first heard it) but, alas, there’s the whole cuck­old thing, which he even blames him­self for.  Still… pret­ty sexist.

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9 thoughts on “The 6 Sexistiest Songs of the ’60s — #5

  1. He caught her cre­at­ing on him in their mar­riage bed and he’s a misog­y­nist? You have prob­lems with reality.


  2. It’s just a song, telling a sto­ry through words. He screwed up the work-life bal­ance, found his wife cheat­ing, got his sec­re­tary to draft a let­ter to his wife (like a good busi­ness­man!), realised how good his sec­re­tary was to him, and asked her on a date. Men being close to their sec­re­taries is noth­ing new. This guy nev­er cheat­ed and only made his move after his wife cheat­ed on him.

    Obvi­ous­ly his feel­ings with his sec­re­tary sur­faced in a rush after the infi­deli­ty. But as I said, this is a sto­ry told through song. The sto­ry itself is admit­ted­ly a bit pat, in fact, far-fetched, but it does­n’t strike me as sexist.


  3. After read­ing this I real­ize who­ev­er put this list togeth­er was just a mean per­son des­per­ate­ly try­ing to find misog­y­ny and sex­ism any­where — when where there isn’t any. What an absurd and repul­sive agenda.


    1. If you don’t see misog­y­ny and sex­ism in a song like “He Hit Me (And It Felt Like a Kiss),” I think it says a LOT more about you than it does about me. Have a good day!


  4. First of all, the song kin­da sucks … so there’s that; but I actu­al­ly don’t think it’s all that sex­ist. The lyrics aren’t as self jus­ti­fy­ing or as creepy as your oth­er choic­es — hell, the guy actu­al­ly owns up to his own role in screw­ing up the marriage.

    What’s going on, to my way of think­ing, is that we’ve got a guy who real­izes he’s effed things up with his woman and now he’s in a big hur­ry to put his mis­takes behind him by start­ing over with who­ev­er hap­pens to be nearby. 

    I’d charge him with wish­ful think­ing before call­ing him a sexist.


  5. Noth­ing sex­ist about this song and the guy was cer­tain­ly less fem­i­nine than the fel­low that struck his girl in “He Hit Me (and It Felt Like a Kiss)” by The Crys­tals. Obvi­ous­ly, had he been more of a man and gar­nered his wife’s respect and vet­ted her prop­er­ly (because a good woman tells a man direct­ly there’s a prob­lem instead of expect­ing him to read her mind and screw­ing around behind his back; such would’ve cared about pre­serv­ing the rela­tion­ship and her sex­u­al loy­al­ty) but, noth­ing sex­ist with hav­ing the self-respect to drop her for the slut she is and move on.


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