Sunday, May 15, 2005

"A slavery no less worthy"

France's Ministry of Justice has put up the website When divorce was prohibited for its collection of petitions to reinstate divorce in the nineteenth century. The outline of the petitions links to 11 petitions (in facsimile and transcription). One interesting petition, written to the Provisional Government of the Second Republic in 1848 for Marie Thérèse Rosalie Lorrillière by her father, compares her continuing marriage with slavery:
You have just abolished slavery among the Negroes, but there is also a slavery no less worthy of your attention, because it weighs on civilized creatures who, despite their just and proven complaints to break their chains, and despite [enormous failures of their obstinate tyrants to prove otherwise], [remain enslaved] because on the one hand [their tyrants] deny their wrongdoings shamelessly, and pretending to be good apostles, they dare to state that they do not want to separate from their wives. (Googl-English with some editing)

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