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MAIN POINTS of MARY WOLLSTONECRAFT's FEMINIST THOUGHT

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MAIN POINTS

of

MARY WOLLSTONECRAFT's

FEMINIST THOUGHT



nature has established some differences between men but civilization has increased them even through education.


Indeed, it's a neglected and inadequate education the cause of the weakness and of the misery of the women, made dependent and subjected to men.


The neglected education results in the fact that the strength and utility/usefulness of women is sacrificed beauty. women are like flowers: beautiful and useless.


Wollstonecraft' aim is making clear to men and women that women are not subordinate beings so they don't have to be mere/insignificant objects of pleasure and desire of men because they are human creatures, provided with faculties to cultivate their virtues and improving themselves.


Indeed, if it's true that, according to the law of nature,  woman is physically inferior to man, Mary Wollstonecraft argues that it's not the same with regard to the mind. In spite of this, because of their physical superiority, men sink women still lower, making them mere alluring objects. Women, seduced by this, don't realize the state of subjection in which they are.


As well as men, Wollstonecraft criticize only masculine women, that is, those women that want to imitate men, while affirms that woman, just as man, has been placed on earth to unfold its faculties and acquire those virtues that ennoble the human character.


For this reason, Mary Wollstonecraft tries to convince men to let women acquire strenght of body and mind and so become respectable members of society.


Education given to women towards the end of the 18th  century drives them to take care only of frivolous things and to cultivate only their beauty because the only way to gain a place in society was trough marriage.


According public opinion, women haven't sufficient strength of mind to acquire some virtues and, consequently, they must be let, trough ignorance, in a state of perpetual childhood and innocence.


According another prevailing opinion women are have been created rather to feel than reason, while man has been created to reason.


Since women are weak and resourceless, they are obliged to address to men for any need and to be protected and defended from their insignificant fears, that are increased by men in order to make even stronger the state of dependence of women.


Against those who(m) assert that education of women would give power to women on men, Mary Wollstonecraft argues that the aim of education is not that of acquire power on men but to acquire power over themselves.


The neclected education makes women unable to sustain by themselves and, from being the mistress of the family, makes them dependent from their brothers' benevolence and often victims of the jealousy of their sisters-in-law that, considering them as intruders, employ all their means to convince their husband to turn/drive their sisters out of home.


The care of the children, too, is often limited to the concerning about their costly dressing.


Finally, despite a woman is a good wife and mother, the man always goes out of home to seek for its pleasures.







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