The Enslavement of Women
June 4, 1925 — House of Commons, Ottawa, Canada
I believe it is the desire of everyone in this House that the home should be preserved. I believe the preservation of the home as an institution in the future lies almost entirely in the hands of the men. If they are willing to give to women economic freedom within that home; if they are willing to live by the standard that they wish the women to live by, the home will be preserved. If the preservation of the home means the enslavement of women, economically or morally, then we had better break it . . .
I would ask men to think of that and think of it seriously. I do believe that the economic freedom of women is one of the things that is causing increasing divorces, because women will not tolerate what they once had to tolerate. You can smile about it if you like, but I know a lot of men who talk very learnedly on a subject like this and who want women to be very pure and very chaste when they themselves are not fit to associate with a chaste and pure woman. So, when we have a single standard for men and women, both morally and economically, we shall have a home that is well worth preserving, and I think we can be quite sure it will be preserved. . . .
Source: Macphail, Agnes, House of Commons Debates 4 June 1925) 1950.