This thesis examines how women in a rural town think about themselves as women, how they try to live up to their ideals of womanhood in their daily lives, and how they pass their experience as women on to their children. In different chapters I descibe and examine the women's daily lives; the house and it's interiors, upbringing, socialisation, work, morality, leisure and gossip. The town, "Choicehill", is located in one of the poorer areas of New Zealand and struggles with problems related to addiction, violence, crime and lack of employment. I describe how, due to their low income, lack of education and employment most women find it hard to achieve what they want, which is to "break the circle" economically and gendewise. In general, "Choicehill" women do not continue their education beyond the compulsory 5th Form Diploma, and in most of the households described one or both of the partners earn their living from social welfare money. I argue in the thesis how women under these circumstances create hierarchies and evaluate each other based on criteria connected to the women's ability of housekeeping, cleanliness, decency, behaviour, language, economy and morals. Additionally, I take gender into consideration by describing how the women act, interact and appear on different arenas in the public sphere and how they, for instance share the housework with their partner in the domestic sphere. By describing the "Choicehill" women's tacit rules and ideals connected with femininity and masculinity I argue that the gender roles are upheld and reproduced through the socialisation of the children. The women themselves contribute to the reproduction of the existing gender pattern by their way of surpressing each other through evaluation, gossip and female hierarchy thinking. In this way, the women claim on the one hand to be trying to change the existing gender patterns, but on the other hand they contribute to sustaining them.