“If all men are born free, how is it that all women are born slaves?” This quote was from one of Mary Astell’s pieces of literature and it was a question she wanted all women to ask themselves. Mary Astell is known as “the first English feminist” and I chose her as my topic for this paper, because I believe in a lot of her beliefs about how women should be treated equally to men and be allowed to pursue whatever they wish- whether that be a career or a degree. I though she’d be an interesting topic and her views on feminism have made an impact on they way women think today, which means that I think she should be included in the canon of major English writers.
Mary Astell was born in 1666 to Mary Errington and Peter Astell at Newcastle on the Tyne River in England. Her mother was a merchant and taught Mary all the things a woman should know and how to act, but Mary wanted to learn more than her wifely duties, she wanted to expand her knowledge of the world and make a difference in the world. Her uncle, Ralph Astell, was a clergyman who noticed her thirst for knowledge and took her under his wing and began teaching her lessons in philosophy, mathematics, and logic. He started her education, but at the age of thirteen Mary’s uncle passed making her have to continue her learning on her own.
Her family life continued to go downhill because a year before Ralph Astell passed, her father, Peter, had taken the same fate. Mary’s mother was awarded a small pension to take care of expenses and their home, but most of the funds ended up being given to Mary’s brother so he could pursue his education, this leaves little for Mary and after her mother dies in 1864 she moves to London in the Chelsea District.
... middle of paper ...
...ir thoughts and not feel as if something was wrong with them. Astell gave women the chance to fully experience their life and expand on their knowledge and spirit. She made women realize that they were their own person not someone who had to be ordered around and under-appreciated. So thank you, Mary Astell, for being brave enough to share your thoughts and make a life for yourself, because it gave women the courage to do the same.
Lindemann, Kate. Women Philosophers. Web. 7 Dec. 2013.
"Mary Astell." BrainyQuote.com. Xplore Inc, 2013. 7 December 2013.
"Mrs. Mary Astell.” English Churchwomen of the Seventeenth Century. 3rd ed.
New York: J. A. Sparks, 1846. 116-119.
“Some Reflections upon Marriage.” The Norton Anthology English Literature.
Ed. Stephen Greenblatt. New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., 2012.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- Mary Astell and her Relation to 18th Century Poets In eighteenth century England, women were stripped of all their assets upon marriage. In short, when a woman married she became the property of her husband. Subjugated and forced to obey a man who may or may not be abusive, violent, or simply unpleasant, these women did not had little choice in the matter. For this reason, none can argue the importance of Mary Astell in the history of women’s liberation. A proto-feminist, Mary Astell penned the groundbreaking essay, “Some Reflections upon Marriage.” However, Mary Astell could be considered harsh, especially when compared to Lady Mary Wortley Montagu and Anne Finch.... [tags: marriage, liberation, segregated]
578 words (1.7 pages)
- “She was a king’s daughter, she was a king’s sister, she was a king’s wife, she was a queen, and by the same title a king also” # Mary Tudor was an influential women of her time period. Many in modern society know her for her particularly bad reputation as Bloody Mary, however they do not realize the contributions she made, or her influence on history . The story behind Mary’s reputation gives insight as to her true accomplishments as England’s first queen. When Mary Tudor was born on February 18, 1516, she was the only child that King Henry VIII and his wife Catherine of Aragon had successfully conceived together.... [tags: Mary Tudor, Bloody Mary]
1412 words (4 pages)
- ... A few weeks later Mary goes to visit her cousin Elizabeth in Judea, and upon arrival Elizabeth feels a leap in her womb and yells out “Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb” (Luke 1:42). At this moment Mary realizes that she and Elizabeth are both pregnant under the will of God. Throughout Jesus’ life, Mary played a huge role and as a result she became both a motherly and womanly example for all. Mary was there at the wedding feast in Cana and persuaded Jesus to perform his first miracle.... [tags: Mary, Blessed Virgin Mary, Christianity]
1270 words (3.6 pages)
- When reading the Bible, many individuals often place emphasis on the substantial male individuals such as Jesus, God, Peter, and Joseph while not entirely recognizing the importance of the female figures present in the New Testament such as the Virgin Mary and Mary Magdalene. Without the Virgin Mary, there may not have been Jesus, the son of God. Mary Magdalene and the Virgin Mary play essential roles in the New Testament and in a way, ensure the continuation of Christianity and the existence of Jesus.... [tags: Jesus, Christianity, Mary]
1009 words (2.9 pages)
- I Dream the World The one cultural image that has constantly grabbed my attention would be of the Virgin Mary. It is not unusual to go into a Catholic Spanish family’s home and see a statue or portrait of the image of the Virgin Mary. She represents so much courage and the only sacred mother that has represented what it means to withstand suffering. For me, the Virgin’s image has always made me feel humbled and childlike. The Virgin Mary has been a constant image that has been portrayed in all of the places I have lived in growing up and still remains this way, in my home.... [tags: Mary, Blessed Virgin Mary, Virginity, Spirituality]
922 words (2.6 pages)
- The term 'gothic' has many different forms. The most important and original form is architecture during the medieval period. It starts out with the great cathedral, Saint-Denis, of Paris. Then the Westminster Abbey of London was built. These are characterized by their pointed arches and flying buttresses. Gothicism also came in the form of art. Tres Riches Heures du duc de Berry, by the Limburg brothers, showed elegance through statements in the best known way of gothic art. This popular style of art is called manuscript illuminations.... [tags: Mary Shelley]
709 words (2 pages)
- ... As the conversation continues, Justine, referred to as the unhappy victim, also admits that she has no way to explain or dispel the evidence against her. With little struggle and no hope left, she accepts her fate, confessing to the crime in hopes to gain salvation. In the novel, Justine’s only role, aside from forming a short relationship with Elizabeth, is to serve as collateral damage of Victor’s actions. As the second member of his family to be killed, indirectly by him, she aides in advancing the novel as she contributes to Victor’s guilt.... [tags: Frankenstein, Mary Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft]
1170 words (3.3 pages)
- Mary Tudor or Queen Mary I of England was infamously known as Bloody Mary. While many believe Bloody Mary was an evil monster, others believe she was a great queen because of her many accomplishments. Mary was actually a good devoted Catholic others still to this day believe she was an evil woman, but with these interesting facts it will be determined that Mary was a good queen. Mary Tudor of England, Born on February 18, 1516, was always a precious lady.(Gairdner) According to the article “Queen Mary”: “Mary wanted to restore the catholic faith, and reunite England with Rome.” Queen Mary I was quite successful, she managed to rearrange “the royal household, and it was thought right to give... [tags: Queen Mary of England]
948 words (2.7 pages)
- "I, the miserable and the abandoned, am an abortion, to be spurned at, and kicked, and trampled on" (SparkNote on Frankenstein). This famous quote said by Frankenstein, in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein, which leaves a lasting impression on the reader was intended by Shelley. Literature was a major part of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley's childhood and adulthood. Mary Shelley's parents brought literature to her from the day she was born. Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin, as she was named at birth, was born to two intellectual rebels of their day, William Godwin and Mary Wollstonecraft, on August 30th, 1797.... [tags: Mary Shelley Author]
1393 words (4 pages)
- Mary MacKillop was born in Fitzroy, Melbourne on January the 15th 1842. She was the first child to Alexander MacKillop and Flora MacDonald. Mary was one child out of 8 and spent most of her childhood years looking after and acting like a second mother to her siblings. The MacKillop family were quite poor so at the young age of 14, Mary got herself a job as a governess and as teacher at a Portland school. All the money Mary earned went towards her families everyday living. While working as a governess, Mary met Father Julian Tension Woods.... [tags: Biography Mary Mackillop]
1612 words (4.6 pages)