Portal Site for Russellian in Japan
Sex and happiness
[From: Mortals and Others, v.1, 1975.］
ラッセルの結婚観は realistic(現実主義的) ,恋愛観は idealistic(理想主義的) であると言ったらよいでしょうか？ 恋愛と結婚についての考え方は人様々ですが,結婚「制度」の法的意味合いを軽視している人が多いように思われます。法律は犯罪防止や弱者保護の側面を持っていますが,「離婚」によって不利益を受ける人間（妻,夫,子供,ケースによっていろいろ）を保護するという側面が重要だと思われます。（2000.11.25: 松下）
We are told that sex was inflicted upon Adam and Eve after the Fall as a punishment. From What I have seen of its working in the present day I am inclined to agree with this view. Almost all the young men and young women that I know suffer acutely in one way or another through its workings. Can you, reader, lay your hand on your heart and say that you have derived more pleasure than pain from sex and its consequences? In the old days of masculine domination the matter was simple. Men took what they wanted, and women submitted. In this way half the human race was happy and half unhappy. But with the modern demand for justice as between men and women, this arrangement became impossible. The reformers may have intended that women should become as happy as men, but what in fact they secured was that men became as unhappy as women. All would be well if only people would pair off as they did in Victorian novels and live happily ever after. But simple and satisfactory as this prescription is, people resolutely refuse to follow it. Either the wife gets tired of the husband or the husband gets tired of the wife. If the wife is sufficiently dutiful, she may conceal the disgust inspired by her husband's habitual gestures and habitual anecdotes and habitual pronouncements on questions of public moment. In the case, she will take out her dissatisfaction on her children. Or she may seek distraction elsewhere, in which case she must either become an adept in deception or drive her husband to distraction with jealousy. If it is the husband that gets tired first, he may, if he is a man of high morality and iron self-control, take refuge in politeness and hard work, but sooner or later the strain will become intolerable, and he will either break down or break out. Sometimes the solution is sought in divorce, but the same reasons which led to the first divorce are likely to lead to a second and third. I have frequently been embarrassed in talking to American ladies to find that whaterver man I happened to mention had been their husband at some time or other.
All this is very sad. It all springs, we may be told, from the mistaken notion that sex should be a source of happiness. No one changes his dentist because the hours spent in his company are not wholly pleasurable. If people expected misery from sex they would be less disappointed when they got it.
This point of view is one of respectable antiquity and is indeed bound up with much traditional morality. But is it really the best that can be done? I do not believe so: I believe that a little more realism and a little more self-control in the matter of jealousy and ill-temper would make all the difference. A great deal of our modern trouble has come from mixing up romantic love, which is a poetic and anarchic impulse, with marriage, which is a social institution. The French have not made this mistake, and on the whole they are considerably happier in these respects than than English-speaking nations.
However that may be, it is clear that percept and practice in our day are in some way at fault. Modern marriage too often fails not only to give happiness to the husband and wife but also to produce satisfactory children, which is its purpose considered as an institution. The children of modern marriages are apt to be few, nervous, and over-wrought, surrounded by an atmosphere of anxiety in which it is impossible for them to thrive, either neglected by their mothers or watched with too meticulous a solicitude. Somehow or other, the old institutions seem to be out of gear. It is useless to preach that men and women ought to return to the modes of behaviour of a simple age, for they will not do it. An ethic is called for, but it must be a new ethic, and above all it must be realistic in taking account of the facts as they exist in our day.