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Women during the Enlightenment

Uploaded by xLoves a xRiSKx on Jan 15, 2007

Women during the Enlightenment: Communities, Economies & Opportunities

In many ways, the position of women was seriously degraded during the Enlightenment. Economically, the rise of capitalism produced laws that severely restricted women's rights to own property and run businesses. I believe that this was unfair and very sexist of the way Enlightenment thinkers thought about how women and men differ because of their gender. Just because a woman’s gender, she can only marry if she was part of a family, the family would usually make up the dowry. If she was on her own then she had to save enough money to pay her own dowry. This doesn’t end at marriage, however. Not only were women treated as nothing but maids and wives, with their harsh income, they were required to invest in the household economy before she could join it. If a woman was born into an agricultural community or in an artisan's family, they began tasks as productive laborers in the family economy at the age of six or seven. On the farm women's labor was less appreciated, and women almost always left home between the ages of eleven and fourteen to either work on another farm or become a servant in a household. I think it is very wrong to make women act like slaves because they were considered far more inferior than men, who basically got the better education. Enlightenment thinkers also believed that the various intellectual disciplines, such as science and philosophy, were meant only for men. So while men were learning the new sciences and philosophies, all that was offered to women in education was decorative "accomplishments." I think that those years were morally wrong because the Enlightenment, however, stressed the absolute importance of education for moral development and the ideal operation of society. In addition, this education was only open to wealthy women who could afford to pay for it. I think that this time period was very brutal and unfair to women. Especially that standing up for equality wasn’t easy at all.

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Uploaded by:   xLoves a xRiSKx

Date:   01/15/2007

Category:   History

Length:   2 pages (339 words)

Views:   13288

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