A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

Audio Sample

Mary Wollstonecraft

A Vindication of the Rights of Woman

Read by Fiona Shaw with Jonathan Keeble


In A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, Mary Wollstonecraft tackles the wasted potential she sees in women, refusing to see them as inferior to men; she decries their limitations and suggests that they are worthy of an equal standard of education, and that they should be taught to develop their own reason, not simply how to gain a man. Written in 1792, at the height of the French Revolution, A Vindication is an eloquent and persuasive response to the prevailing attitudes of the time. It is the original feminist manifesto.

  • 8 CDs

    Running Time: 9 h 25 m

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    Digital ISBN:978-1-84379-993-1
    Cat. no.:NA0243
    Download size:145 MB
    Released:March 2016
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Fiona Shaw’s narration brings out the meaning of prose that many listeners may find a bit difficult to parse, making this classic work more accessible to a general audience. Described as an early feminist, Wollstonecraft was both a product of, and ahead of, her time. Her primary thesis – which was far from the prevailing view of the nineteenth century – was that women should have equal opportunity to be educated consistent with their class in order for them to be able to fulfil their duties as mothers and wives. Shaw adopts a tone of righteous indignation as Wollstonecraft attacks the views of Rousseau, who felt that educating women was wasteful, and others. The contrast between their arguments is enhanced by the dual presentation of Shaw and Jonathan Keeble in a point/counterpoint discussion.

J.E.M., AudioFile

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