The Foes of Our Own Household

By Theodore Roosevelt | Go to book overview
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CHAPTER XI
THE PARASITE WOMAN; THE ONLY INDISPENSABLE CITIZEN

OF all species of silliness the silliest is the assertion sometimes made that the woman whose primary life-work is taking care of her home and children is somehow a "parasite woman." It is such a ridiculous inversion of the truth that it ought not to be necessary even to allude to it. Nevertheless, it is acted upon by a large number of selfish, brutal or thoughtless men, and it is screamed about by a number of foolish women. Therefore a word of common sense on the matter may not be out of place.

There are men so selfish, so short-sighted or so brutal, that they speak and act as if the fact of the man's earning money for his wife and children, while the woman bears the children, rears them and takes care of the house for them and for the man, somehow entitles the man to be known as the head of the family, instead of a partner on equal terms with his wife, and entitles him to the exclusive right to dispose of the money and, as a matter of fact, to dispose of it primarily in his own interest.

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