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Dora Russell

  • ... anybody who has anything abusive to say of women, whether ancient or modern, can command a vast public in the popular press and a ready agreement from the average publisher.

  • The origin of the stupid ideal of womanhood against which men as well as women to-day are still fighting was the asceticism of the Christian religion; and, unless St. Paul was a woman in disguise, I fail to see how woman is to be blamed for a conception of her place and duty from which she has suffered more than anybody else.

  • I read recently in an article by G.K. Chesterton, that sex without gestation and parturition is like blowing the trumpets and waving the flags without doing any of the fighting. From a woman such words, though displaying inexperience, might come with dignity; from a man they are an unforgivable, intolerable insult. What is man's part in sex but a perpetual waving of flags and blowing of trumpets and avoidance of the fighting?

  • We want better reasons for having children than not knowing how to prevent them.

  • There is no instinct that has been so maligned, suppressed, abused, and distorted by religious teaching as the instinct of sex.

  • Because men have so long ruled the world, it does not follow that the philosophy by which they have ruled it is the correct one.

  • Animals we are, and animals we remain, and the path to our regeneration and happiness, if there be such a path, lies through our animal nature.

  • I am not impressed by external devices for the preservation of virtue in men or women. Marriage laws, the police, armies and navies are the mark of human incompetence.

  • Comfort is bought at too high a price.

    • Dora Russell,
    • 1921, The Tamarisk Tree ()
  • I am filled with hatred for money, for battleships, for industry, for factories, for the grind, grind, grind of the machine on all our creative instincts ...

    • Dora Russell,
    • 1921, The Tamarisk Tree ()
  • What does one do about the dead? They live forever.

    • Dora Russell,
    • 1934, The Tamarisk Tree ()
  • What a denial of our humanity that at the centers of power, where decisions are made, there is no room for nurturing, for love, and children. There is more to life than the 'inhuman' work place. It is terrible that many men do not know that: it is a tragedy if women follow them.

    • Dora Russell,
    • in Dale Spender, There's Always Been a Women's Movement This Century ()
  • One of the problems with industrialism is that it's based on the premise of more and more. It has to keep expanding to keep going. More and more television sets. More and more cars. More and more steel, and more and more pollution. We don't question whether we need any more or what we'll do with them. We just have to keep on making more and more if we are to keep going. Sooner or later it's going to collapse. ... Look what we have done already with the principle of more and more when it comes to nuclear weapons.

    • Dora Russell,
    • in Dale Spender, There's Always Been a Women's Movement This Century ()
  • Industrial societies can only be run successfully by dictators or oligarchs.

    • Dora Russell,
    • in Dale Spender, There's Always Been a Women's Movement This Century ()
  • Industrialism is the religion with 'the machine' as the god going to answer all the prayers. Communism and capitalism were just competing sects.

    • Dora Russell,
    • in Dale Spender, There's Always Been a Women's Movement This Century ()

Dora Russell, English writer, philosopher

(1894 - 1986)

Full name: Countess Dora Winifred Black Russell; can also be referred to as Dora Black, Lady Russell.