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A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

By Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft

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Book Id: WPLBN0000111695
Format Type: PDF eBook
File Size: 0.8 MB
Reproduction Date: 2005
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Title: A Vindication of the Rights of Woman  
Author: Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft
Volume:
Language: English
Subject: Literature, Literature & thought, Writing.
Collections: Classic Literature Collection
Historic
Publication Date:
Publisher: World Ebook Library

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Shelley, M. W. (n.d.). A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. Retrieved from http://www.worldebookfair.org/


Excerpt
After considering the historic page, and viewing the living world with anxious solicitude, the most melancholy emotions of sorrowful indignation have depressed my spirits, and I have sighed when obliged to confess that either Nature has made a great difference between man and man, or that the civilisation which has hitherto taken place in the world has been very partial. I have turned over various books written on the subject of education, and patiently observed the conduct of parents and the management of schools; but what has been the result? -- a profound conviction that the neglected education of my fellow-creatures is the grand source of the misery I deplore, and that women, in particular, are rendered weak and wretched by a variety of concurring causes, originating from one hasty conclusion. The conduct and manners of women, in fact, evidently prove that their minds are not in a healthy state; for, like the flowers which are planted in too rich a soil, strength and usefulness are sacrificed to beauty; and the flaunting leaves, after having pleased a fastidious eye, fade, disregarded on the stalk, long before the season when they ought to have arrived at maturity. One cause of this barren blooming I attri- bute to a false system of education, gathered from the books written on this subject by men who, considering females rather as women than human creatures, have been more anxious to make them alluring mistresses than affectionate wives and rational mothers; and the understanding of the sex has been so bubbled by this specious homage, that the civilised women of the present century, with a few exceptions, are only anxious to inspire love, when they ought to cherish a nobler ambition, and by their abilities and virtues exact respect.

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