Wednesday, 11 March 2009

Feverish Unrest

Our great-grandmothers taught that "repose of manner" was an essential attribute to all true gentlewomen. When a woman talked it must be in a low, soft voice, and without gesticulation, no matter what pretty rings she might be wearing, nor how dainty and white were her hands. In sitting neither the feet nor the knees might be crossed; it was not "nice." But we of to-day seemed to have reversed these edicts. "Whatever you do, don't be stiff," has become our motto. Our girls all seem to stand in such fear of being voted "slow" or "stiff" that they risk running to the opposite extreme, and becoming "loud" or "eccentric." In the craze after "naturalness" the pendulum has swung to the opposite extreme, and we have feverish unrest.
Home Chat Magazine, 1896.

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