MARY WOLLSTONECRAFT'S RIGHTS OF WOMAN (1792), Ejercicios de Idioma Inglés. Universidad de La Laguna (ULL)

MARY WOLLSTONECRAFT'S RIGHTS OF WOMAN (1792), Ejercicios de Idioma Inglés. Universidad de La Laguna (ULL)

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Asignatura: textos historicos y culturales anglonorteamericanos, Profesor: Maria Jose Chivite, Carrera: Estudios Ingleses, Universidad: ULL
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Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797). She is an important woman who defended the women's

Rights in an unequeal society. Vindications of the Rights of Woman (1792) is her brilliant

work and is considered one of the most important examples of feminist works in the period

of Ilustration moreover nowadays. So It stills being significant.

Her work is a manifest that relates the bad conditions of women in a period that promotes

freedom and equality. A clear contradiction between the reality and the utopia for women.

She was a fighter for the equal rights and opportunities for men and women in Ilustration

''the age of the lights''. What she really wanted is to inspire a revolution in female manners,

againts the women's education of that times.

In the introduction she started exposing her point of view about the education. This model

of education has been represented by female rol, that has bad values in comparing with

men. They are trated as subordinate that only cares about being attactive or elegant (moral

superficial world apart from the reason) while men are in the world of reason.

Wollstonecraft tried to solve this issue giving the State the responsability of women's


She attacks the wealthy, because of the ''inmorality, vanity, and false-refinement'' of rich

people. She thinks that wealth does not define a person, a person is defined by the virtue.

(thought and knowledge). In relation with this, one of the central arguments for her is that

women should be educated rationally to give them the opportunity to contribute to society.

As a illustrate figure she believes that freedom neccesitates equality of sexes; intellect or

reason, is superior to emotions. In this case, she is triying to convince women that their

virtues are synonymous of weakness. In consecuence, traditional education has served to

encourage their inferiority.

The key to achieve a sense of self-respect is education. She thinks that if women were going

to be good mothers, they firts needed to be intelligent, citizens and educated.

In the other hand, the only way that women could rise in the society class was throug

wedlock. So she wanted that women were responsable of themselves, (in the same moral


Her work is meanly a femenist reference of the Rousseau's work when he said that

menshould not have power over each other, nevertheless she felt betrayed because

Rousseau made a gender distinction based in ''the natural inferiority'' of women. She also

participated in meetings with William Blake, Thomas Paine, Joseph Priestley, William

Godwin... Edmund Burke is her main enemy, because he is a defensor of traditional feelings.

(men power).

In conclusion, this treatise is a summary of her goals as a woman, mainly the economical

independence from her husband. Also she wrote about the woman image, and education

that makes her inferior because of the useless values like marriageable and beauty. In spite

of physical difference between women and men, the virtues of the mind do not seem to rely

on physical prowess.

In A Vindication of the Rights of Woman Wollstonecraft talks a great deal about power in

regards to women's position in society, but what she wants is not to have power over the

men, but over themselves.

From my personal point of view she was a brilliant woman of her times, because she had a

hard life and her experience being rebel againts the social structure made a change in

history. I can not imagine how hard was living in that century if you were a woman,

economical independendent, and company woman. Nowadays patriarcgal society stills

being a reality, so we can rescue this writter and her values. (It is important to metion that

she was not taking in account at that period, but with the pass of time she considered as

one of the most important woman who fighted for the women rights all over the history).

I mostly agree with her when she talks about the rol, and women values. This issue is totally

present currently, but not in the same way. Now women can aspire upper but education

values in our childhood stills being different than boys (patriarchal society) for example: pink

for girls (cute) and blue for boys (appropriate for his genre). Men values are progressive,

nevertheless women values in adolescence changes because of cosification. Sometimes this

social pressure has relation with cosumerism, that also creates a difference between the

roles in society.

She is the perfect example of freedom, equality, and good values not just for women, but

for all society (she wants that all women have opportunities). She obviously criticized the

State and she won, not in her times, but in the paas of time. Nevertheless women currently

suffer prejudices that society has to change, for example: cosification, the idea of delicacy,

the economic independece in some parts of the world,unequal salary between genres etc.

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