This course looks at the life and works of Mary Wollstonecraft, a poet, philosopher and essayist who is mostly remembered today as a founding figure of feminism. To this day, Wollstonecraft has not received the scholarly and public attention she deserves. Apart from A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, her feminist key work, she also wrote on the French Revolution, plus two novels, a travelogue and a children's book. In a time when women were not considered able writers and were typically restricted to the domestic sphere, Wollstonecraft lived a passionate and self-determined life in changing relationships, among Romantics and proto-anarchists. We will study several of Wollstonecraft's works in class, but will also discuss important intertexts, such as the writings of the early feminist Olympe de Gouges, the political philosopher William Godwin (her husband) and the novelist Mary Shelley (her daughter). We will also consider contemporary feminist perspectives that draw on Wollstonecraft.
- Kursleiter:in: Harald Pittel