Both Margaret Sanger, the best-known American birth-control advocate, and Norman Haire, her Australian contemporary, grew up in families where there were 11 children. Both were driven by their mothers' misery to campaign for family limitation. Haire caused outrage in Sydney in 1944 by describing his mother at 40 as a ''devitalised, irritable, cantankerous, prematurely old woman … For all that she got out of life she might as well have been a prize cow.''
...Haire has been criticised by the movement for homosexual law reform for his unwillingness to ''come out''. He has generally been forgotten as a birth-control pioneer because he was a man in what was seen as women's business. Claimed neither as Australian, English nor Jewish, Haire appears in a proper perspective in this book, which shows him at last as a worthy subject for his own drama on film perhaps, like Alfred Kinsey, or on television.