Women Concerns as Discussed by Wollstonecraft and Keats
Two literary works that discussed the social inequality that is regarded to women are John Keats’ To Autumn, which was written in 1819 and Mary Wollstonecraft’s A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, which was written in 1792. Despite of being written by different genders, these two literary works are both concerned with the same theme, which is the social tendency to discriminate women as the inferior sex.
It is obvious that both of these writers have been correct in their assumption, based on the clear arguments that they are able to present, and which can be evidenced several times in the lines they have written in their works. What is obvious in Wollstonecraft’s A Vindication of the Rights of woman is her appeal to the society which is dominated my men to be sensitive to the real meaning of the importance of women.
She suggested that there is a need for women to be educated, based on her observation that “the neglected education of my fellow-creatures is the grand source of the misery I deplore; and that women, in particular, are rendered weak…” (Wollstonecraft 663). Wollstonecraft is also clear in her description of women of her time as being barren beauties, and she persuades them to let go of the characters that has been labeled to them, such as “susceptibility of the heart, delicacy of sentiment, and refinement of taste” (Wollstonecraft 664) as another term for weakness.
Based on her writing, it is very clear that Wollstonecraft wanted the women to be strong and to be self-reliant in pursuing their dreams, and not to be overly dependent on men to do the more challenging responsibilities, while they are content with simply taking care of the opposite sex. She calls on the women to begin a social transformation where there is an equal treatment on the importance of the two genders. She makes this appeal in the lines, “It is time to effect a revolution in female manners—time to restore to them their lost dignity…by reforming themselves to reform the world” (Wollstonecraft 667).
On the other hand, John Keats’ poem, To Autumn, delved on the sad reality of beauty eventually passing away, just like the seasons. Keats’ begins by using metaphor to relate Autumn with youth, particularly with the idea that the beauty will never come to pass, as what was expressed in the line, “And still more later flowers for the bees, until they think warm day will never cease” (Keats 1). In relation to women, the literary works of Wollstonecraft and Keats describes a dilemma that the gender possesses.
While the former delved on the importance of women to awaken to the reality that they need to fight the social discrimination against their gender and start an academic revolution that will allow them the chance to be free from the social bondage, the latter is concerned with the sad reality that beauty fades very quickly, and that this may cause grief to the particular person, especially if she holds no virtue other than her beauty. In Keats’ metaphor, he describes this sadness in the lines, “Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too” (Keats 1). Conclusion Wollstonecraft’s A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, and Keats’ To Autumn, both discuss a kind of inequality that women have been subjected to. It has been a dilemma then as it is now, that it causes the readers to formulate significant questions, such as, what could be truly more meaningful for a woman to acquire, is it to have superior academic skills, such as what Wollstonecraft had suggested, or is it in having exemplary beauty that will only last in one’s youth, as what Keats has written in his poem.Sample Essay of EduBirdie.com