A Vindication of the Rights of Woman Kindle Edition
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|Kindle, November 15, 2020||
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- Publication date : November 15, 2020
- File size : 1377 KB
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Print length : 309 pages
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Language: : English
- ASIN : B08NJVZLCX
- Lending : Enabled
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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Her style is poetic. At times, it feels it almost has a sing-song way about it. Her ability reminds me of Jane Austen and makes it very hard to put the book down. I wonder how much Austen lifted from Wollstonecraft considering there was a section on Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice.
Her philosophy is intriguing. Wollstonecraft was quite ahead of her time. She felt that women were trapped in an eternal childhood in the way they were treated by their other halves. This left them unable to be good wives much less good mothers. She makes the argument that not only can women reason, but they can be employed in any field. She envisions a time where boys and girls, rich or poor, can be educated together.
As an aside, I don't think the public school system has worked out so well. I attended a joke of a school. That is why I am grateful to have the opportunity to homeschool. Even if you disagree with her assessment that children should be publicly educated, her main point is that boys and girls alike can be educated the same. She actually advocated for a private/public school mix. I'm not sure that our modern day system would meet her vision at all.
The crème de la crème? Pages upon pages of attacks on Rousseau. I think I've formed a personal vendetta against Rousseau so when she blasts his inane philosophy for nearly 1/3 of the book, it could only bring a sense of sweet justice. If you're no fan of Rousseau, its worth the read just for that. Ya know, the guy who created Civil Religion. The guy who wrote books about how children should be educated then abandoned all 5 of his newborn children to a foundling hospital. The guy who said women were created for his pleasure. Yeah, its a pretty epic takedown. Enjoy.
Speaking specifically of the girls, Wollstonecraft showed that appearance and the ability to please was so overly emphasized, that girls had no wherewithal to learn studies, and those they were taught were useless (a few phrases in French or Italian, learned by rote, for example), as there was no understanding applied.
Wollstonecraft discussed motherhood and childrearing and I found her examples just as intriguing as those on education. She strongly emphasized morality as well as effectiveness regarding the practices current in her time period. Women who pushed their young offspring off to be raised by nurses did themselves and their children harm. Instead of a bond of love, mutually developing mother and child physically, mentally, and emotionally, Wollstonecraft witnessed mothers returning to their vain, flirtatious, insipid lives, while children were left without good parental role models, to the influences of often immoral peers and caregivers. A mixture of repression and license leads to a vicious cycle where the children, boys and girls, grow up to be like their parents: without respect for women.
I enjoyed all Wollstonecraft's counterpoints tp Rousseau's writings, and I'm interested I'm a way to read some of his works. From her quotes, he sounds like a real piece of work. Another historical figure that I wouldn't mind time traveling in order to visit him with a well placed kick in the pants.
I highlighted several passages as I read this through Kindle so I don't need to include those quotes in this review.
All in all, I'll repeat my first statement in this review when I say that I felt proud and grateful to be a woman in modern times and I owe that in part to this inspiring author!
Top reviews from other countries
Forging links between female subjugation and class oppression, between government tyranny and more personal forms of autocracy, Wollstonecraft, a passionate radical with an abhorrence of slavery, aristocratic and inherited power, remains a startlingly modern voice.
Her ideas for education would seem to have been largely taken up; the various education acts have seen to that.
The book as a whole is not terribly well structured and some of her sentences have a strange structure (even allowing for the Georgian period English), so you may find you have to read some sentences over again to grasp her meaning.
Jane Austen may have read this book, because contained therein are those immortal words "a good reputation once lost is lost for ever", as in Pride and prejudice. Serious students of Jane Austen need to read this book in conjunction with Fordyce's Sermons to Young Women to gain a full appreciation of the attitudes of the time.