Mary Wollstonecraft

Who was she ?
Englishwoman who was the daughter of an abusive alcoholic. In her early adulthood, she was a governess, but left that job to become a writer.
What did she do?
Inspired by the” Declaration of the Rights of Man” from the French Revolution, as well as a similar document drafted by a French Woman for women, she wrote “A Vindication of the Rights of Women.” (1792) In it she asked if men were to “contend for their freedom and to be allowed to judge for themselves respecting their own happiness, be it not inconsistent and unjust to subjugate women?” She argued for women’s education and advocated women’s participation in the democratic process.
Why was she important?
Her work inspired nearly all subsequent feminist writings and gave fuel to feminists of the future generations, including Fanny Wright, Susan B Anthony and Gloria Steinam. Her basic points – that women should be granted rights equal to those of men, and that human character is subject to social conditioning, are at the root of today’s feminist arguments.
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