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The family is older than humanity, and therefore cannot be called a human institution. A post office, now, is wholly human; no other creature has a post office, but there are families in plenty among birds and beasts; all kinds permanent and transient; monogamous, polygamous and polyandrous.We are now to consider the growth of the family in humanity; what is its rational development in humanness; in mechanical, mental and social lines; in the extension of love and service; and the effect upon it of this strange new arrangement—a masculine proprietor.Like all natural institutions the family has a purpose; and is to be measured primarily as it serves that purpose; which is, the care and nurture of the young. To protect the helpless little ones, to feed and shelter them, to ensure them the benefits of an ever longer period of immaturity, and so to improve the race—this is the original purpose of the family.When a natural institution becomes human it enters the plane of consciousness. We think about it; and, in our strange new power of voluntary action do things to it. We have done strange things to the family; or, more specifically, men have.