A Vindication Of The Rights Of Women By Mary Wollstonecraft

Decent Essays
Mary Wollstonecraft was a woman who lived during the late 18th century and chafed under the societal expectations places upon her. Inspired by the writing, A Declaration of the Rights of Woman and the Female Citizen, which demanded equal rights for both men and women, Wollstonecraft published her book, A Vindication of the Rights of Women, which called for both men and women to realize their roles concerning inequality. The book also allowed for Wollstonecraft to express her ideas and methods for the improvement of equality between the sexes. Vindication went on to print many times throughout the 18th and 19th centuries. Because of this, Mary Wollstonecraft was one of the earliest feminist writers and her writings became a cornerstone of…show more content…
She writes that the second type of women can become more useful members of society but they lack the greatness of mind and taste which allows them to do so, as a result of their education. Wollstonecraft believes that women in this state cannot be effective mothers because all of their power derives from their believed and implied superiors, men. She then examples many different vocations and career which would be suitable for women, and criticizes these professions for being vain or useless. She then goes on to state that women, should they ever need to support themselves should and could practice as physicians, lawyers, shopkeepers and politicians; however, their lack of education and status keeps them from being able to pursue vocations where they would be effective. The excerpt then finishes with two notions, the first being that men should release women from the proverbial chains that imprison them in their lives so they can become better mothers, wives and citizens. The second is the notion that, if given the freedom, women would emulate the high moral standards of men, otherwise known as virtue which is a central theme in Vindication.
Despite being a feminist writer, aspects of the gender prejudices of her time period can be seen in Vindication.
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