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Women and Political Economy.

Mrs Fawcett lectured recently to the University Extension Students in Oxford on 1 Political* Economy as a Subject of Women’s Education.’ She said that , the prohibition of the-labor of young children add the provision of education for them; had been almost unmixed blessings. ‘ ‘There -was a : lower death-rate juvenile crime had de--5 ditaed by more than' half concurrently with a considerable.increase in’ .the population; there dras lebs'drnnkc'nnefes, rdore thrift, and better social conditions in every respect. If women would but realise 1 thatan important branch of economic development >, in the history of our country depended on them, on their conscientious study of certain facts, and the sequenceof certain phenomena, surely there were'plenty of them who would grudge neither time nor labor to the task. She did not desire to enter on any controversial political 'subject; but she Would remind them that not very long ago one of the most distinguished dons of the university .was asked by social'reformers in India what he would advise them to do to oheok the evils arising from infant marriage in thatrcountry. Professor Max Muller replied: “Write a short pamphlet, ibontaining nothing but well-known and well-authenticated . facts, and 1 send it to the women of England. They begin to be a power, and they have one splendid quality—they are never beaten. If they once know what is going on in India, tolerated by an English Government, they will tell every candidate for Parliament: ‘ Unless this blot is removed from (the escutcheon of England, you shall not be elected.’ Women, at all events, have courage, and when they see what is hideous they do not wait for orders before they say what they think.” What Professor Max, Muller thought English .women could: dd' with regard to social problems in India she urged them to do in regard jto social problems in England. The facts were not stored ; in any one pamphlet; they swarmed around them on every side. ( They could be .understood and dealt with successfully in the main by those who had mastered certain-economic principles. On those grounds she invited them to fit themselves by patient study to deal With those questions, and, so help to forma strong body of sound opinion on economic and social questions, which would .influence the course of legislation .upon them, and, more important still, wonld tend to strengthen character, to enforce the obligations of duty on both rich and. poor, and so lift, up our national life. to a higher plane than anyone bad yet; attained. ,

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Women and Political Economy., Issue 8029, 4 October 1889

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Women and Political Economy. Issue 8029, 4 October 1889

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