A Vindication of the Rights of Woman: With Strictures on Political and Moral Subjects. With a Biographical Sketch of the Author
This is Wollstonecraft's classic treatise on women's oppression and women's rights which served as a model for many feminist arguments later in the 19th century.
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acquire affection allowed appear appetite assert attain attention beauty become behaviour body brutes character charms chastity civil common confined connex creatures cultivated cunning degrade degree delicacy despotism dignity discharge disgust domestic dress duties endeavour equally exer exercise exertions faculties fancy feelings female folly fondness girls give graces happiness haram heart human husband ignorance imagination indolent innocent kind knowledge libertine live mankind manner marriage married mean mind modesty moral moral character mother natural rights nature never nity observe opinion parents passion person pleasure polygamy prejudices pretty woman principles produced prove racter rational reason render respect Rousseau seldom sense sensibility sensual sentiments sexual slavery slaves society soul speak spect spirit strength sublime sufficient superior supposed tain taste thing tion tivation true truth tural understanding vanity vate vice virtue virtuous weak whilst whole wish woman women youth
Page 19 - They that deny a God destroy man's nobility, for certainly man is of kin to the beasts by his body, and, if he be not of kin to God by his spirit, he is a base and ignoble creature.
Page 62 - O'er other creatures. Yet when I approach Her loveliness, so absolute she seems And in herself complete, so well to know Her own, that what she wills to do or say, Seems wisest, virtuousest, discreetest, best. All higher knowledge in her presence falls Degraded : wisdom in discourse with her Loses discountenanced, and like folly shows.
Page 66 - HE that hath wife and children hath given hostages to fortune ; for they are impediments to great enterprises, either of virtue or mischief. Certainly the best works, and of greatest merit for the public, have proceeded from the unmarried or childless men; which, both in affection and means, have married and endowed the public.
Page 105 - Be even cautious in displaying your good sense. It will be thought you assume a superiority over the rest of the company. — But if you happen to have any learning, keep it a profound secret, especially from the men, who generally look with a jealous and malignant eye on a woman of great parts, and a cultivated understanding.
Page 20 - Hast thou not made me here thy substitute, And these inferior far beneath me set? Among unequals what society Can sort, what harmony, or true delight ? Which must be mutual, in proportion due...
Page 20 - Unargued I obey: So God ordains: God is thy law, thou mine: To know no more Is woman's happiest knowledge, and her praise.
Page 36 - So far from it, that, after surveying the history of woman, I cannot help, agreeing with the severest satirist, considering the sex as the weakest as well as the most oppressed half of the species. What does history disclose but marks of inferiority, and how few women have emancipated themselves from the galling yoke of sovereign man? - So few, that the exceptions remind me of an ingenious conjecture respecting Newton: that he was probably a being of a superior order, accidentally caged in a human...
Page 7 - In the government of the physical world it is observable that the female in point of strength is, in general, inferior to the male. This is the law of nature; and it does not appear to be suspended or abrogated in favour of woman.
Page 8 - My own sex, I hope, will excuse me, if I treat them like rational creatures, instead of flattering their fascinating graces, and viewing them as if they were in a state of perpetual childhood, unable to stand alone. I earnestly wish to point out in what true dignity and human happiness consists. I wish to persuade women to endeavour to acquire strength, both of mind and body...
Page 2 - And how can woman be expected to co-operate, unless she know why she ought to be virtuous? — unless freedom strengthen her reason till she comprehend her duty, and see in what manner it is connected with her real good. If children are to be educated to understand the true principle of patriotism, their mother must be a patriot...