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النشر الإلكتروني

THE AWAKENING OF

WOMEN

What a strange thing is man, and what a stranger Is woman!

-BYRON.

OF WOMEN

OR

WOMAN'S PART IN EVOLUTION

BY

FRANCES SWINEY

Be not ashamed, women, your privilege encloses the
rest, and is the exist of the rest.

You are the gates of the body, and you are the gates
of the soul._WALT WHITMAN.

LONDON
GEORGE REDWAY

1899

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PREFACE

To the few millions of women who think, and to the many millions of women who do not, I dedicate this book, in the humble hope that a thought here and there expressed may excite in earnest minds deeper and more practical interests in matters pertaining to the welfare of women, and in the majority of women an awakened, keener perception of the true and holy responsibilities of womanhood.

I have written for the crowd, not for the student. I have avoided as much as possible technical and scientific phraseology, and long columns of statistics. The woman who thinks and reads can verify my statements by having recourse to the books on the reference list; and I plead with her, provided she agrees

with my premises, to enter the band of teachers for the enlightenment and advancement of the majority. The average woman, occupied with many things, to whom study would be an added burden, would not open the book, if it were a purely scientific, erudite treatise (such as the subject might be made in abler hands than mine), and it is that woman I would fain reach, influence, and enlist, as an active, sympathetic worker in the higher and purer development of our race.

In the following pages I have not hesitated to represent things as they are, not as they seem. I have striven to pierce the many coats of veneer with which complacent hypocrisy has glossed over the rottenness of many social institutions. Possibly, if the gloss had not been so thickly laid on, the true state of affairs would have been sooner recognised by the

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