"She says that she wants to work. She is lying; she wants power and property."
August Strindberg (1849 - 1912), Sweden's most important literary figure, has a controversial reputation, largely owing to alleged "misogyny" and also antisemitic remarks. Feminists have fought his writings since his own lifetime but his literary qualities have proven too valuable for him to be dismissed that easily. Renowned as one of the world's greatest playwrights, and author of masterpieces such as the naturalistic Miss Julia (my favorite play), The Father and Creditors, mesmerizing one-act plays such as The Bond (about a court battle between two parents who realize in the end there is nothing left in their life except their son, through whom they live vicariously) and the macabre The Dance of Death. All of those plays are about the relationships between the sexes, usually featuring cheating and infidelity, always featuring marital unhappiness. Later plays such as A Dream Play and The Ghost Sonata spawned theatrical modernism.

His writings beyond his plays are under-appreciated outside of Sweden: he was also a great letter-writer and penned several worthy novels. The short story form, however, is probably the genre next to plays which he excelled in most. As Sue Prideux points out in her biography of Strindberg (Strindberg: A Life, short-listed for the Samuel Johnson Prize) the first volume of Getting Married was written in a time of relative marital bliss, before his wife's flirtatious relationship with a lesbian permanently ruined their marriage. Strindberg, a great father and respectful husband, believed the traditional family to be the best solution for the "woman issue", as long as woman were given equal rights in terms of education and voting. What he did not expect was that the book would be prosecuted for "blasphemy", necessitating a return back to Sweden to stand in court. Who had instigated the prosecution? Its likely authors were the feminists, gathered under the banner of the Society for the Married Women's Property Rights, and the moralists and pietists, who belonged to the Federation, a society working for the abolition of prostitution, but also strongly feminist in character. Both bodies were led by influential members of the upper classes, supported by the right-wing press. Though not numerous, these were powerful people, and they hated Strindberg—the feminists for his suspect views on the emancipation of women, the moralists for his outspokenness about sex and religion. They wanted to sue for indecency -- but as those charges would not be strong enough, they aimed for blasphemy instead. In any event Strindberg was hailed as a hero for free speech so the plan backfired initially, but the long-term damage it did to Strindberg life and career can not be underestimated.

By the time the second volume of Getting Married was being written, Strindberg was a changed man. His first marriage had broken up and his views of women took a 'darker' turn. The preface, often called "misogynist", is characterized by Sue Prideuax as a fair product of the time and place. Unfortunately all translations of Getting Married are long out of print, although you can find a translation of the stories here. Since those lack the prefaces, here is the majority of the preface to the second book, in which we find his older views on women replaced:

“When they decide to get married, they think about all kinds of things: about the drawing-room and the kitchen, about promenades and sea-bathing, about ball-rooms and banqueting-halls, they think about everything except the most important thing, the bedroom, that sanctuary from which, like sunrise itself, the future generations of the family, of the race, and of humanity will spring.”

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To love, that is to say: to live again through the family along with one particular individual of the opposite sex, appears to be an exclusively masculine characteristic.
A man therefore sacrifices everything in order to be allowed to live with the woman he loves.
A woman loves a man only for the advantages he offers her. Women have always exploited this masculine characteristic to their own advantage, and consequently man has really become their slave, for he who works for another without compensation is a slave.
Therefore, when woman says she is a slave, she is lying.

***

Woman invented the idea that she should be paid for her favours. As a prostitute she is paid per time, as a married woman per contract. It comes to the shame thing. By appearing to be reluctant she excites man’s passions to the point of madness, which finds an outlet in woman-worship and erotic poetry, by means of which man has lived right up to the present time in a blissful stage of self-deception about his humiliation, the true nature of woman, and her dominant position.
Why is it that there is not in the literature of any country a hymn of praise to man written by a woman? Because she must of necessity despise her dupe!
Woman has sat idly by while man has worked. He has shouldered the whole burden. He has tilled the soil, refined the raw materials, corrected errors, made all the discoveries, defended his home and country with his life, while woman has sat peacefully enjoying enjoying the fruits of his toil and his efforts. And this most useful member of society has now become an object of ridicule. This self-sacrificing husband, who has worn himself out for his wife and his children, is now treated as a criminal.

***

Woman is now lying, and saying that she has always been subjugated, and that she has never been allowed to take part in public work.
She has always been allowed to occupy all top posts.
She has been an empress without knowing the laws of the land; an abbes without having been to a university; and no one has had more time than she, supported as she has been by a toiling husband, to cultivate science and the arts.
Why has she not done so?
She has been lazy.
Woman lies when she says that her time has been occupied with looking after the children and the household. …
What then has woman done?
She has been lazy.

***

To depend on slaves for a living has always debased and degraded the slave-owner. Therefore woman has fallen behind. Laziness has made her body less muscular than a man’s, and she has not developed her mind from lack of forethought. …

***

She has made laws, ruled, played havoc, propagated religion, meddled with politics, started wars, and planned religious persecution throughout the centuries, preferably while sheltering behind a strong man’s back, for she has always been false and cowardly.
She has been the constitutional monarch, and men the responsible ministers.

***

In our own time, it now looks as if woman had woken up, and become aware of her false position, and the fact that power is slipping out of her hands; for man too has awakened, and has begun to see through the deception.
Because cowardly and lazy woman has driven man alone into war the number of men has decreased.
The male sex is also exhausted, because only man has worked to excess. Moreover, now that men are no longer inclined to allow themselves to be exploited by women in marriage, a large number of women are beginning to find themselves without husbands, that is without men to slave for them.
Hence the enraged shouts of the female sex, which find expression in the so-called ‘Women’s Movement’.

***

Now she is waking up and repenting, not of her faults, but of her folly. Now she wants to take precedence again, through cunning and deceit.

***

She says that she wants to work. She is lying; she wants power and property.

***

A number of men will not marry as they find plenty of women who are eager for the pleasures of life, and who are willing— for payment of course (man is never paid)—to enter into free relations.
This has rescued a large number of men who from the slavery of marriage. But now those sensible women are raging against such free relationships, which prevent men from marrying. This is the great secret of the Federation. They see that they have been outwitted, and now want to force men into legal prostitution (=marriage).

***

Now we come to another regrettable aspect of the degeneration of women. They declare that they will not bear children. Good, but they want to get married. That is to say, they want to enjoy the pleasure of being supported by man, without fulfilling the duties which the acceptance of that support entails. This is simply cheating.

***

Moreover, they want the vote. Without any obligations, of course. Without doing military service. That is to say, they want to sit and vote away men’s lives without risking their own.

***

In their efforts to drive man into matrimony the ladies have now succeeded in getting the inns closed. He must ‘take his pleasure’ in the family.
We have read such a lot about the young men who go to balls and visit bathing-places in order to look for heiresses. Let us now have a few good descriptions (objective ones!) of the fond mamas, who lead their naked daughters to bathing-places and balls to catch providers.

***

Woman—now thoroughly rested after 6000 years of sound sleep—is trying, prompted by necessity, to force her way into the labour-market, which has been organized by men. She should be driven out, especially if she is impudent and spoiled.
The labour-market belongs to the bread-winner.
Therefore, out with the drones!

***

But it is not the labour-market she is seeking, it is the professions and the top positions.

***

When they divided the salary of the professorship of mathematics at Stockholm University, in order to give half to a woman, it was a crime—against fair play.
And men rejoiced about it!

***

And then women dare to complain that they were are worse paid than men. To begin with this is only partially true. In the market that she has created, woman is always better paid. In the market of vice, she alones gets a salary, man gets nothing, and woe betide him if he asks for anything. On the boards, where physical charms are rewarded, no male opera singer commands the sort of salary that a prima ballerina receives. In teaching posts for women, which can be occupied after passing a miserable examination, the ladies are better paid than men who have passed a stiff examination. In 1867 a male teacher with a degree was paid 750 crowns, but there were women primary school teacher who were getting 1,000 crowns. And women teachers were granted scholarships to enable them to go abroad to study.
Moreover, if woman pushes her way into the bread-winner’s (man’s) field of work, she is a trespasser. Furthermore her work is not as good as a man’s, for she is weaker and lazier; consequently she should be worse paid.
Woman is less well paid for another reason: the law does not require her to be the bread-winner. She also lives more cheaply. Why does she do so? Because it is the man who pays for all her amusements. At a subscription ball tickets are issued for ladies and for gentlemen, but the man pays for both. It is always the man who pays. Woman is mean. She expects to be paid for everything, from her company to her favours. What brother has ever been paid for by his sister? He has to pay everything, including the Christmas presents she gives him!

***

Woman is very fond of cheating, and in Banks in which she is employed, men have to supervise what she does. A gentleman farmer once told me that in the country, if women are given outside jobs to do like mucking-out or herding cattle, you always have to keep an ee on them, otherwise they sit on some bank and chatter.
Industrious woman! Humbug!