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Mary Wollstonecraft ARadical Englishwoman

Mary Wollstonecraft: A Radical Englishwoman Mary Wollstonecraft lived in a time where women had no right to vote, no right to education beyond what their mother or governess taught them, and basically no right to individuality or an opinion. They were considered possessions and virtually had no mind of their own. She realized that this was a problem of society and openly voiced her opinions on the matter. She wrote the book A Vindication of the Rights of Women in response to a literary response to the society’s so-called proper behavior of a woman and what her rights should be. But her opinions were brought on by more that the ability to think for herself; she suffered much during her childhood and throughout the years to come. Wollstonecraft dealt with the beating of her mother and sister, death of a close friend, and even a nervous breakdown of her sister. Her own experiences in her life inspired her to write a book that would cause her to be criticized harshly for her radical views.From the beginning, Mary’s life was one large cry for help. Her father,always in the middle of some economic failure, would beat Mary’s mother andthe children during his drunken fits of rage and frustration over losing money andbeing a failure. She had witnessed time and again her mother being abused byher father, and many times she would throw herself in front of her father to keepher mother from receiving yet another blow (Ferguson 1). Another domestic violence situation she encountered was that of her sister, Eliza. Eliza had suffereda nervous breakdown, and Wollstonecraft was convinced that this was caused byher husband’s abuse. Wollstonecraft then proceeded to kidnap her sister and hidher from her husband and five-month year old daughter. This action caused quitea stir in seventeenth-century England, and many people criticized Mary for doingso (Abrams 98). Considering her r...

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