What did the women do before World War 2?

Before automation (dishwashers, clotheswashers, etc.), maintaining a family home was a full-time purpose. And mostly this task was laid before the female, while the husband worked outside the home. Females who did not marry became spinsters, which originally referred to menial textile work but later could mean any work to support herself sans husband. The advent of automation provoked the "second wave" of feminism, when the home was no longer satisfyingly or proudly challenging. Homemakers turned to the (traditionally male) workplace in order to satiate their desire for purpose and pride.