Kitty Foyle, a 1940 film starring Ginger Rodgers based on a novel by Christopher Morley, is a classic in the genre of working-women books and films. Raised amid the Irish working-class in Philadelphia, secretary Kitty follows her heart instead of her head and falls in love with her blue-blood boss–a recipe for trouble in an era much more class-conscious than ours. While her romantic life is rocky from the start, Kitty’s star rises in the business world. While I haven’t yet read the book, the film is a gem worth seeking out for a glimpse at what it was like to be a working woman in the 1930s and 1940s.
Ginger Rodgers won a Best Actress Oscar for her portrayal of Kitty Foyle. The film was so popular that it even spurred demand for a style known as the “Kitty Foyle” dress, a practical, comfortable dress with contrasting collar and cuffs: