Ellen Key, fully Ellen Karolina Sofia Key

Key, fully Ellen Karolina Sofia Key

Swedish Feminist Writer on family life, ethics and education

Author Quotes

Everything, everything in war is barbaric... But the worst barbarity of war is that it forces men collectively to commit acts against which individually they would revolt with their whole being.

For success in training children the first condition is to become as a child oneself, but this means no assumed childishness, no condescending baby-talk that the child immediately sees through and deeply abhors. What it does mean is to be as entirely and simply taken up with the child as the child himself is absorbed by his life.

Not observation of a duty but liberty itself is the pledge that assures fidelity.

The educator must above all understand how to wait; to reckon all effects in the light of the future, not of the present.

The emancipation of women is practically the greatest egoistic movement of the nineteenth century, and the most intense affirmation of the right of the self that history has yet seen.

The more horrifying this world becomes, the more art becomes abstract.

When one paints an ideal, one does not need to limit one's imagination.

Why is the heart that is broken considered so much more valuable than the one or the two who must cause the pain lest they themselves perish?

A great poet has seldom sung of lawfully wedded happiness, but of free and secret love; and in this respect, too the time is coming when there will no longer be one standard of morality for poetry and another for life. To anyone tender of conscience, the ties formed by a free connection are stronger than the legal ones.

All philanthropy... is only a savory fumigation burning at the mouth of a sewer. This incense offering makes the air more endurable to passers-by, but it does not hinder the infection in the sewer from spreading.

Art, that great undogmatized church.

At every step the child should be allowed to meet the real experience of life; the thorns should never be plucked from his roses

Corporal punishment is as humiliating for him who gives it as for him who receives it; it is ineffective besides. Neither shame nor physical pain have any other effect than a hardening one.

Education can give you a skill, but a liberal education can give you dignity.

The destruction of the personality is the great evil of the time.

Love is moral even without legal marriage, but marriage is immoral without love.

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Key, fully Ellen Karolina Sofia Key
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Swedish Feminist Writer on family life, ethics and education