What Were Mary Wollstonecraft's Ideas About Government And Women?


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Florent Lefortier Profile
Mary Wollstonecraft was an early British feminist who lived during the eighteenth century. She was a huge advocate of women’s rights, as well as an author, philosopher, and mother to Mary Shelley (who wrote Frankenstein).

Wollstonecraft is most famous for writing A Vindication of the Rights Of Woman, in which she argues that men are not naturally superior to women – they’ve just had more of an education.

What did Mary Wollstonecraft Advocate or Believe In?
  • Republicanism
  • Education for women
  • That men and women are equally-rational beings and should be treated as such (however, Wollstonecraft never explicitly stated that men and women are equal.)
  • Equal fundamental rights for men and women
  • That inherited power - passed down from generation to generation - wasn't fair
  • That reason and emotion – usually seen as masculine and feminine traits respectively – should not act independently of one another, but should complement and inform each other instead.
  • That women should not be forced to marry in order to survive, as this makes marriage nothing more than legal prostitution. Before Wollstonecraft got married, she had several love affairs and illegitimate children of her own. This was very rare for a woman of her time.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
Mary Wollstonecraft thought that government should be minimal, as well as church and militaristic hierarchies, because they limited people's freedom. 

She wanted to improve the lives of women, but also the lives of their children and husbands.

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