Women and the Enlightenment
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In this article, the writer notes that Mary Wollstonecraft's seminal work, 'A Vindication of the Rights of Women', may be read as a product of the Enlightenment in terms of its privileging reason and the ideas of social progress and utility, in its critical analysis of the social structures that perpetuate female subordination in European society. This essay reviews Wollstonecraft's text from within the context of the Enlightenment. The writer argues the thesis that Wollstonecraft's proposals with respect to the central role of education in defining women's rights and freedoms reflect key Enlightenment values of reason, social progress and utility.
From the Paper:"From this Enlightenment perspective, ideas and arguments have value not in and of themselves but in how they advance the happiness of the greatest number of the human population. This premise is not only the basis of Wollstonecraft's critique of her fellow Enlightenment philosopher Rousseau but is also the justification for her entire argument that human society as a whole would benefit significantly from promoting the education and rationality of the female population."
"In advancing this program, Wollstonecraft considers the Enlightenment idea of "reason" to be absolutely central to promoting the rights of women and the social progress of Europe as a whole."
Sample of Sources Used:
- Kant, Immanuel. "What is Enlightenment?" 1784. http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/mod/kant-whatis.html
- Wollstonecraft, Mary. A Vindication of the Rights of Women. London: Dover Thrift Editions, 1996.
Cite this Book Review:
Women and the Enlightenment (2007, November 18) Retrieved December 06, 2021, from https://www.academon.com/book-review/women-and-the-enlightenment-99632/
"Women and the Enlightenment" 18 November 2007. Web. 06 December. 2021. <https://www.academon.com/book-review/women-and-the-enlightenment-99632/>