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Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Women and Men, I. Introductory. (search)
te the two sexes for the purpose even of scolding them conjointly. Gradually the habit arose of putting these admonitions into little twin volumes, always kept carefully apart. The duties of men and women travelled, so to speak, on the same conveyance and with equal accommodations, but in separate cars or distinct cabins, and always, as in our own travelling arrangements, with a slight excess of courtesy towards the feminine side. The author of The whole duty of man published at Oxford in 1673 another volume called The ladies' calling, with a frontispiece representing a British matron sitting in a transverse ray of sunlight, and stretching a robust right arm upward after the crown of wisdom. According to the titles of these books it would seem that men have their whole duty to perform as men, while women follow their calling as ladies, a distinction even more confusing than that of the stations on the American railways, whose doors are sometimes tersely labelled Men and Women, whi