On the Subjection of Women by John Stuart Mill

Joseph Blackman
2 min readMay 1, 2020


Pg 134 the burden of proof is supposed to be with those who are against liberty; who content for any restriction or prohibition; either any limitation of the general freedom of human action, or any disqualification or disparity of privilege affecting one person or kind of persons, as compared with others

Pg 137 the opinion in favor of the present system, which entirely subordinates the weaker sex to the stronger, rests upon theory only; for there never has been trial made of any other: so that experience, in the sense in which it is vulgarly opposed to theory, cannot be pretended to have pronounced any verdict

Pg 151 it is not that all processes are supposed to be equally good, or all persons to be equally qualified for everything; but that freedom of individual choice is now known to be the only thing which procures the adoption of the best processes, and throws each operation into the hands of those who are best qualified for it

Pg 158 one can, to an almost laughable degree, infer what a man’s wife is like, from his opinions about women in general

Pg 218 Women cannot be expected to devote themselves to the emancipation of women, until men in considerable number are prepared to join with them in the undertaking

Pg 219 And it is perfectly obvious that the power remains. It is a power given, or offered, not to good men, or to decently respectable men, but to all men; the most brutal, and the most criminal

Pg 230 It is often said that in the classes most exposed to temptation, a man’s wife and children tend to keep him honest and respectable, both by the wife’s direct influence, and by the concern he feels for their future welfare

Pg 236 Even a really superior man almost always begins to deteriorate when he is habitually king of his “company”: and in his most habitual “company” the husband who has a wife inferior to him is always so

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