"My own sex, I hope, will excuse me, if I treat them like rational creatures, instead of flattering their fascinating graces and viewing them as if they were in a state of perpetual childhood."
Wollstonecraft’s landmark text may often be forgotten amidst the heroic actions of the suffragettes over 100 years later, but the effect it had can not be underestimated. At a time when women were far from equals, Wollstonecraft helped to make the intellectual case for equality that underpinned eventual social change.
Today – like in the works of many classics - Wollstonecraft’s ideas may not appear particularly groundbreaking, but at the time they were radical. She was not alone in making the claim for women’s rights, at a time when women were deemed as property, but she did provide us one of the finest examples of moral bravery through literature. It was these kinds of ideas that provided a platform for real social change.