take account of the influence of the environment which, as you have seen, effaces some of the most marked differences.
In this examination of the physical man, every thing leads to the conclusion which we had already reached in our earlier lectures; and we can repeat with redoubled certainty: the differences among human groups are characters of race, and not of species; there exists only one human species; and, consequently, all men are brothers—all ought to be treated as such, whatever the origin, the blood, the color, the race.
Gentlemen, the lectures I have given here require a special preparation, and are not always easy to prepare; but I shall not regret either my time or my pains, if I am able, in the name of science, and that alone, to render a little more clear and precise for you this great and sacred notion of the brotherhood of man.
|ON THE EQUALITY OF THE SEXES.|
SIR: In the foregoing letter I have examined the theory of the connection between equality and justice, with the view of showing that the only real connection between the two ideas is to be found in the fact that, as justice implies general rules, it also implies an impartial application of those rules to all the particular cases to which they may apply. I also showed that when equality is spoken of as being just or unjust in any more general sense than this, the expression can mean nothing else than that it is or is not generally expedient. The doctrine upon this subject which I deny, and which I am disposed to think Mr. Mill affirms—though, if he does, it is with somewhat less than his usual transparent vigor and decision is that equality is in itself always expedient, or, to say the very least, presumably expedient, and that in every case of inequality the burden of proof lies on those who justify its maintenance.
If I had time to do so, I might give in proof or illustration of this the whole of his essay on the "Subjection of Women," a work from which I dissent from the first sentence to the last, but which I will consider on the present occasion only with reference to the particular topic of equality, and as the strongest distinct illustration known to me of what is perhaps one of the strongest, and what appears to me to be by far the most ignoble, contemptible, and mischievous of all the popular feelings of the age.
The object of Mr. Mill's essay is to explain the grounds of the opinion that "the principle which regulates the existing social relations between the two sexes, the legal subordination of one sex to the other, is wrong in itself, and now one of the chief hindrances to human
- From the letters of "F.," in the Pall Mall Budget.