William Moulton Marston

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William Moulton Marston (May 9, 1893 – May 2, 1947), also known by the pen name Charles Moulton was psychologist, lawyer, inventor of the systolic blood pressure test and the writer who created Wonder Woman with artist Harry G. Peter.

Quotes[edit]

  • The only hope for civilization is the greater freedom, development and equality of women in all fields of human activity.
    • "Noted Psychologist Revealed as Author of Best-Selling "Wonder Woman,' Children's Comic," press release, typescript [June 1942], WW Letters, Smithsonian
  • A motion picture must be true to life. If a picture portrays a false emotion a false emotion it trains people seeing it to react abnormally.
    • Jill Lepore, The Secret History of Wonder Woman (2014), p. 136.
  • The talkies are the only art that would attract Leonardo da Vinci were he alive to-day. This art is a baby giant, as clumsy as all babies are...we don't know what the baby will be doing and saying when it grows up. But we are sure it will make its mark in the world.
    • Martson, Pitkin, The Art of Sound Pictures (1929), p. vi; Jill Lepore, The Secret History of Wonder Woman (2014), p. 140.
  • Sound and talking undoubtedly increase the entertainment value of a picture. There is a distinct conflict, however, between a pictorial and sound elements, which cannot be entirely avoided until third dimensional pictures are made.
    • Jill Lepore, The Secret History of Wonder Woman (2014), p. 139.
  • Not even the church is so powerfully equipped to serve the public psychologically as is the motion picture company.
    • Henry W. Levy, "Professor to Cure Scenarios with Wrong Emotional Content: Dabbled in Movies While at Harvard; Now Sought By Hollywood with Offer of Favorable Contract", New York University News January 1929; Jill Lepore, The Secret History of Wonder Woman (2014), p. 137.
  • In the majority of cases which are brought to me as a consulting psychologist for love and marital adjustment, there are self-deceptions to be uncovered as well as attempts to deceive other people. Beneath such love conflicts there is almost always a festering psychological core of dishonesty.
    • William Moulton Martson, Lie Detector Test, p. 119.
  • The next 100 years will see the beginning of an American matriarchy—a nation of amazons in the psychological rather than the physical sense. In 500 years there will be a serious sex battle. And in 1000 years women will definitely rule this country.
    • As quoted in Neglected Amazons to Rule Men in 1000 yrs., Says Psychologist; Washington Post, November 11, 1937.
  • There are one or two rules of thumb which are useful in distinguishing sadism from exciting adventure in the comics. Threat of torture is harmless, but when the torture it’s self is shown it becomes sadism. When a lovely heroine is show bound to the stake, comics followers are sure that the rescue will arrive just in the nick of time. The readers wish is to save the girl, not to see her suffer. A bound or chained person does not suffer even embarrassment in the comics, and the reader, therefore is not being taught to enjoy suffering.
    • A s quoted in Olive Richard Bryne's, "Don't laugh at the comics" Family Circle, Oct 25, 1940.
  • Comics they say are not literature--adventure strips lack artistic form, mental substance, and emotional appeal to any but the most moronic of minds. Can it be that 100,000,000 Americans are morons?
    • WMM, Why 100,000,000 Americans Read Comics p. 35-44.
  • Tolerant people are the happiest, so why not get rid of prejudices that hold you back?
    • Your Life What are your prejudices? (1939).
  • ...appetite emotion must first, last and always be adapted to love.
    • The Emotions of Normal People p.393 as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.8; in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn,
  • If you conclude, as I do, that the only hope of a permanent peace and happiness for humanity on this planet is an increased expression of love, and that women are the primary carriers of this great force, one of the problems we face is to provide women with more opportunity for using their love powers. The last si thousad years have demonstrated quite conclusively, I believe, that woman under the domination of man can increase but meagerly the world's total love supply. Our obvious goal, than must be to devise social mechanisms whereby man is brought under the love domination of woman.
    • Women: Servants for Civilization, p.44, as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.9; in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn,
  • The picture story fantasy cuts loose the hampering debris of art and artifice and touches the tender spots of universal human desires and aspirations. Comics speak, without qualm or sophistication to the innermost ears of the wishful self.
    • "Why 100,000,000 Americans Read Comics", The American Scholar, 13.1 (1943): pp 35-44. as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.9; in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn,
  • If children will read comics [...] isn't it advisable t o give them some constructive comics to read? [...] The wish to be super strong is a healthy wish, a vital compelling, power-producing desire. The more the Superman-Wonder Woman picture stories build this innner compulsion by stimulating the child's natural longing to battle and overcome obstacles, particularly evil ones, the better the better chance your child has for self-advancement in the world. Certainly therecan be no arguement about the advisability of strengthening the fundamental human desire, too often buried beneath stultifying divertissments and disguises, to see god overcome evil.
    • "Why 100,000,000 Americans Read Comics", The American Scholar, 13.1 (1943): p 40, as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, pp. 9-10; in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn, as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.9; in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn,
  • A woman character without allure would be like a Superman without muscle.
    • William Moulton Marston, "Letter to M.C. Gaines, Sep. 15, 1943; as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.7 in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn, p.14.
  • Give men an alluring woman stronger than themselves to submit to and they'll be proud to become her willing slaves.
    • William Moulton Marston, Are COmics Fascist?, as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.7 in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn, p.14.
  • Women now fly heavy planes successfully; they help build planes, do mechanics' work. In England they've taken over a large share of all material labor in fields and factories; they've taken over police and home defence duties. In China a corps of 300,000 women under the sureme command of Madame Chiang Kai-shek perform the dangerous function of saving lives and repairing damage after Japanese air raids. This huge female strong- arm squad is officered efficiently by 3,000 women. Here in this country we've started a WOmen's Auxilary Army and Navy Corps that will do everything men soldiers and sailors do except the actual fighting. Prior to the First World War nobody believed that women could perform these feats of physical strength. But they're performing thm now and thinking nothing of it. In this far worse: war, women will develop still greater female power; by the end of the war that traditional description the weaker sex" will be a joke-it will cease to have any meaning.
    • William Moulton Marston as interviewed by Richard, Olive, "Our Women are Our Future": Sylvia Family Circle, (Aug 14, 1944) 14-17, 19 as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.7 in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda", in Containing Wonder Woman: Fredric Wertham's Battle Against the Mighty Amazon by Craig This, p.32.
  • In the spring of the freshman year, the sophmore girls held what was called "The Baby Party" which all freshmen girls were compelled to attend. At this affair, the freshmen girls were questioned as to their misdemeanors and punished for their disobedience and rebellions. The baby party was so name because the freshman girls were required to dress as babies.
At the party; the freshmen girls were put through various students under command of sophomores. Upon one occasion, for instance, the freshman girls were led into a dark corridor where their eyes were blindfolded, and their arms were bound behind them. Only one freshman at a time was taken through this corridor along which sophomore guards were stationed at intervals. This arrangement was designed to impress the girls punished with the impossibility of escape from their captresses. After a series of harmless punishments, each girl was led into a large room where all the Junior and Senior girls were assembled. There she was sentenced to go through various exhibitions, supposed to be especially suitable to punish each particular girls failure to submit to discipline imposed by the upper class girl. The sophomore girls carried long sticks with which to enforce, if necessary, the stunts which the freshmen were required to preform. While the programme did not call for a series of pre-arranged physical struggles between individual girls...frequent rebellion of the freshman against the commands of their captresses and guards furnished the most exciting portion of the entertainment according to the report of a majority of the class girls.
Nearly all the sophomores reported excited pleasantness of captivation emotion throughout the party. The pleasantness of captivation response appeared to increase when they were obliged to overcome rebellious freshmen physically, or to preform the actions from which the captive girls strove to escape....
Female behavior also contains still more evidence than male behavior that captivation emotion is not limited to inter-sex relationships. The person of another girls seems to evoke from female subjects, under appropriate circumstances, filly as strong captivation response as does that of a male.
  • The Emotions of Normal People as quoted in Wonder Woman: Bondage and Feminism in the Marston/Peter comics, 1941-1948 pp. 64-65 by Noah Berlatsky.
  • The creation of children is not justifiable in a majority of unions between the sexes; but when the creation responses are justifiably undertaken, there is sound psychological ground for advising the woman to provide, beforehand, sufficient funds of her own to carry both herself and the child through the period of her physical incapacity for appetitive work. There is sound psychological ground, also, for requiring the male to share equally at least, in the home work and the care of children.
    • The Emotions of Normal People, 395 as quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.18 in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn.

Attributed[edit]

  • The social value of freeing women from a harem-enclosed existence to a life of activity can be questioned only by those advocates of a "man's world" whho wish to perpetuate its butchers and savage jungle law.
    • As quoted in The Ages of Wonder Woman: Essays on the Amazon Princess in Changing Times, edited by Joeph J Darowski, p.7 in the essay "William Marston's Feminist Agenda" by Michelle R. Finn,

Quotes about[edit]

  • I always thought this Marston was a phony.
    • J. Edgar Hoover, WMM, in Jill Lepore, The Secret History of Wonder Woman (2014), p. 166.
  • If Marston is whipping up comics stories while Rome burns, there must be a reason.
    • Olive Richard Bryne, "Our Women Are Our Future", Family Circle, August 14 1942, as quoted in Jill Lepore, The Secret History of Wonder Woman (2014), p. 231.
  • He believes the sexes have changed their professional status, that the hunted has become the huntress, that men have more ideas about women than about themselves and that a majority of men prefer to be 'unhappy masters' rather than 'happy slaves'.
    • Olive Richard Bryne, "Hot Babies, Those Co-Eds," New York Graphic (November 17, 1931).
  • This noted scientist is the most genuine human being I’ve met. He isn’t fat—that is, in the ordinary way. He’s just enormous all over. We walked through the garden and about the grounds. The doctor asked me about my work and myself, and I told him more in 15 minutes than I’d tell my most intimate friend in a week. He’s the kind of person to whom you confide things about yourself you scarcely realize.
    • Olive Richard Bryne Family Circle 1935 as quoted in "Last Amazon" New Yorker, (09/22/2014).

External links[edit]

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