Main  Contacts  
Table of contents
THE CONQUEST OF THE VENEREAL DISEASES-8.1
THE CONQUEST OF THE VENEREAL DISEASES-8.2
THE CONQUEST OF THE VENEREAL DISEASES-8.3
THE CONQUEST OF THE VENEREAL DISEASES-8.4
THE CONQUEST OF THE VENEREAL DISEASES-8.5
THE CONQUEST OF THE VENEREAL DISEASES-8.6
FOOTNOTES
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.1
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.2
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.3
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.4
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.5
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.6
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.7
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.8
SEXUAL MORALITY-9.9
MARRIAGE-10.1
MARRIAGE-10.2
MARRIAGE-10.3
MARRIAGE-10.4
MARRIAGE-10.5
MARRIAGE-10.6
MARRIAGE-10.7
MARRIAGE-10.8
MARRIAGE-10.9
MARRIAGE-10.10
MARRIAGE-10.11
MARRIAGE-10.12
FOOTNOTES
THE ART OF LOVE-11.1
THE ART OF LOVE-11.2
THE ART OF LOVE-11.3
THE ART OF LOVE-11.4
THE ART OF LOVE-11.5
THE ART OF LOVE-11.6
THE ART OF LOVE-11.7
THE ART OF LOVE-11.8
THE ART OF LOVE-11.9
THE ART OF LOVE-11.10
THE ART OF LOVE-11.11
FOOTNOTES
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.1
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.2
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.3
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.4
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.5
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.6
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.7
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.8
THE SCIENCE OF PROCREATION-12.9
FOOTNOTES
INDEX OF AUTHORS

While flirtation in its natural form--though not in the perverted form of 

"flirtage"--has sound justification, alike as a method of testing a lover 

and of acquiring some small part of the art of love, it remains an 

altogether inadequate preparation for love. This is sufficiently shown by 

the frequent inaptitude for the art of love, and even for the mere 

physical act of love, so frequently manifested both by men and women in 

the very countries where flirtation most flourishes. 

 

 

This ignorance, not merely of the art of love but even of the physical 

facts of sexual love, is marked not only in women, especially women of the 

middle class, but also in men, for the civilized man, as Fritsch long ago 

remarked, often knows less of the facts of the sexual life than a 

milkmaid. It shows itself differently, however, in the two sexes. 

 

 

Among women sexual ignorance ranges from complete innocence of the fact 

that it involves any intimate bodily relationship at all to 

misapprehensions of the most various kind; some think that the 

relationship consists in lying side by side, many that intercourse takes 

place at the navel, not a few that the act occupies the whole night. It 

has been necessary in a previous chapter to discuss the general evils of 

sexual ignorance; it is here necessary to refer to its more special evils 

as regards the relationship of marriage. Girls are educated with the vague 

idea that they will marry,--quite correctly, for the majority of them do 

marry,--but the idea that they must be educated for the career that will 

naturally fall to their lot is an idea which as yet has never seemed to 

occur to the teachers of girls. Their heads are crammed to stupidity with 

the knowledge of facts which it is no one's concern to know, but the 

supremely important training for life they are totally unable to teach. 

Women are trained for nearly every avocation under the sun; for the 

supreme avocation of wifehood and motherhood they are never trained at 

all! 

 

It may be said, and with truth, that the present incompetent training of 

girls is likely to continue so long as the mothers of girls are content to 

demand nothing better. It may also be said, with even greater truth, that 

there is much that concerns the knowledge of sexual relationships which 

the mother herself may most properly impart to her daughter. It may 

further be asserted, most unanswerably, that the art of love, with which 

we are here more especially concerned, can only be learnt by actual 

experience, an experience which our social traditions make it difficult 

for a virtuous girl to acquire with credit. Without here attempting to 

apportion the share of blame which falls to each cause, it remains 

unfortunate that a woman should so often enter marriage with the worst 

possible equipment of prejudices and misapprehensions, even when she 

believes, as often happens, that she knows all about it. Even with the 

best equipment, a woman, under present conditions, enters marriage at a 

disadvantage. She awakes to the full realization of love more slowly than 

a man, and, on the average, at a later age, so that her experiences of the 

life of sex before marriage have usually been of a much more restricted 

kind than her husband's.[382] So that even with the best preparation, it 

often happens that it is not until several years after marriage that a 

woman clearly realizes her own sexual needs and adequately estimates her 

husband's ability to satisfy those needs. We cannot over-estimate the 

personal and social importance of a complete preparation for marriage, and 

the greater the difficulties placed in the way of divorce the more weight 

necessarily attaches to that preparation.[383] 


Page 1 from 5: [1]  2   3   4   5   Forward