Up@dawn 2.0

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Women in Philosophy Part 1-Mary Wollstonecraft

Mary Wollstonecraft, known as the pioneer feminist, was born in London on April 27, 1759. She lived a rough lifestyle growing up with an abusive father. Her mother died in 1780. Having lived a traumatic early life, Wollstonecraft left home to dedicate the rest of her life to writing. Her most famous work was A Vindication of the Rights of Women in 1792. In this book, her main point was that women were not merely just meant as a staple in the household and that women deserve the same educational rights as men. This took place when the social stigma was a male dominated world. She also wrote controversial books such as Maria and Wrongs of Women. In 1793, Wollstonecraft travelled to France to study the political and social developments in France. With this, she wrote History and Moral View of the Origins and Progress of the French Revolution. She met Captain Gilbert Imlay while visiting a friend in France and became pregnant with her first daughter Fanny which was named after Mary’s best friend. Later, Wollstonecraft married her long term friend the anarchist philosopher William Godwin due to her pregnancy of her second daughter Mary. She died just ten days after Mary was born due to complications of childbirth. Mary Wollstonecraft is most remembered for her children being born out of wedlock than she is for her writings. Her writings were seen as feministic in the fact that she was strongly for women’s rights, but overall, she wanted to see that every person had equal rights. Socially, she was seen as withdrawn because she would rather be to herself reading than speak about current fashion trends with the other women. At this time, reading was seen as anti-social and self-indulgent. She was called a “philosophical sloven” by Henry Fuseli. Also, the New York Times Literacy Supplement referred to her as “little short of monstrous”. She was not afraid to challenge the social norms of her time.

1 comment:

  1. Reformers and pioneers ahead of their time are often dismissed, in their time, as "monsters"... but we need more of them.