Magna Carta Women: Mary Wollstonecraft 1759-1797

Published: Thursday 14 May 2015
Mary Wollstonecraft depicted in "Magna Carta Women" by Tracy Satchwill and a scan from the title page of her work held by the Archives.

Mary Wollstonecraft was a writer, philosopher and advocate of women’s rights. Known for her work “A Vindication of the Rights of Women”, 1792, one of the earliest works of feminist philosophy. In it, Wollstonecraft argues that women should have an education commensurate with their position in society, claiming that women are essential to the nation because they educate its children. Instead of viewing women as ornaments to society or property to be traded in marriage, Wollstonecraft maintained that they are human beings deserving of the same fundamental rights as men. In the chapter "On National Education", she argues that all children should be sent to a "country day school" as well as given some education at home. She also thought that schooling should be co-educational, arguing that men and women should be educated after the same model.

What we have in the Archives:

A copy of her most famous and influential work A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, London, n.d. in the Murray Collection.  [Ref: Murray/629]

To view these items, or for more information on the Murray Collection in Brunel University Archives, please get in touch.

Page last updated: Thursday 14 May 2015